The daily chronicle of my family as we embark on our quest to relocate from New York to Cairo... the impending journey to get there and the daily lives of myself, my husband and our four children... and other random thoughts while living in Cairo!

Looking to make contact with other Muslimahs who are like myself with small children living or will be living in a foreign country.

I invite you to share the experience with us as we try to make this happen!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Random things....

Greetings all!

Just wanted to take a minute to let everyone know I haven't disappeared but just busy getting things sorted out here. I was feeling bettter but now coming down with something else... ugh. I HAVE to get some probiotics from home ASAP!

Moved into my apartment but not quite sorted yet- I found out today my vast shipment from New York has finally arrived in Alexandria so I'm assuming by this weekend I should be able to arrange to have the stuff brought down to Rehab... can't wait! Basically, my entire life is in those 30+ boxes!

Anyhoo, I have a lovely big flat here, MashaAllah, but I WILL be moving... sounds crazy? Well, after being here for about 3 1/2 weeks now, I can't deal with my other tenants I found out I had sharing my kitchen.... yup, roaches. I CAN NOT do the roach thing. I'm totally crazy when it comes to this... I start to imagine that the damn things have crawled all over everything, leaving masses of germs for us to consume in some sort of way. So how have I been dealing with my psychosis??? Washing everything in the bleach-laden egyptian water (this stuff is beyond horrible- just think putting bleach water mixed with acid in your mouth... that what I felt like the first time I came here and made wudu) and then use my Nestle delivered bottled water to sterilize everything... I sit and boil, boil, boil. So you can imagine it's costing me a pretty penny to keep using my drinking water but I have no choice- I can't consciously give my kids their cups or fix food in a plate where one MIGHT have been. Now, don't get me wrong- the place isn't crawling with them at all- one here and there on occassion.... but I KNOW they're there. We just can't co-exist. And they don't venture out of the kitchen either... so the rest of the place is totally okay but I won't wait around to see if they opt to broaden their living quarters. When I told the hubby, he laughed... he KNOWS me when it comes to this issue: had a wonderful, fabulous apartment we moved into after we first married- everything a girl could ask for but about after a week or so, I saw my first roach there. I can't kill them- don't want carcass on my slippers or anything else for that matter so I usually just cringe (sound like a baby, I know). Then I saw another, then another, then another- so I started to cry- my hubby thought that was the funniest thing! A big womanl like you, crying over seeing roaches... needless to say, he didn't think it was hilarious when I demanded we move.... ;)

So, next month I'll have another flat to fix up- this one I rented is furnished- or semi furnished really... so if you know anything about Egypt, you have to buy EVERYTHING: light fixtures, cabinets for your kitchen walls, closets, sometime a bath tub (some only come with very small stand up showers)- basically, the places only come with bathroom and kitchen sinks and toilets! But it'll be nice to fix it up the way I like and make things comfy for the babies....

Haven't seen any sights as of yet- and since I'll be moving, everything for pleasure will be on hold until that project is complete. An associate of mine have an apartment down by the Red Sea so I might take the kiddies over with some friends one weekend when it's a little warmer to play in the sand... they'll love that.

Oh yes, if any of you sisters have a RELIABLE house cleaner looking for extra work, please let me know- the one I had was a good cleaner but lazy so her last day was yesterday... me, I don't have the patience right now to argue with people- they want money but don't wanna work... go figure. And no, I wasn't slaving her- this seems to be the Egyptian way- my friends DID warn me- first they all start out wonderful, on time and clean like you wouldn't believe. Then they start to show up late (like I'm talking hours late), miss days (without calling mind you)(just happpened to me over the weekend) and then come to clean and clean whatever they want, not what you tell them and expect to be paid- mind boggling to me. One of my girlfriends told me most Egyptians just don't value your time so expect to be waiting, waiting and waiting- if you want to have something done you can't accomplish yourself- this is the way it is. Looking to make my life as easy as possible right now so I need reliable people in my camp since I'm flying solo at the moment..... can't wait for the hubby to get here!

I promise, InshaAllah, more interesting updates with pics when the craziness of adjusting has slowed down- I miss my random entries but just no time to share at the moment. It's ALOT to be in a new land, don't speak the language (at all), with 3 very small children by yourself and have to set up your life again... my poor hubby worries everyday and he's totally stressed since he's not here yet but I tell him I can manage which I'm trying like hell to... most days are good but some days you're like, "Just where can I purchase an automatic weapon complete with silencer???"....

Anyhoo, extremely tired- have another health issue I'm dealing with right now but we'll save that for a later time... gotta go get some sleep while the troops are knocked out! :)

P.S. Just wanted to thank Umm Travis for stopping by the other day and spending the morning and early afternoon with me and the bambinos... it was nice to actually sit down and chat- we had the chance to really talk about ourselves- and even discuss how we both came to embrace Islam, Alhumdulillah. She's a beautiful sister, MashaAllah... I'm glad I've had the opportunity to have met her!


Inspired Muslimah said...

Im happy your settling in ok and I hope the other issues subside soon insha'allah. I am so glad to talk to you via blogger and I have to give you my updated email address...I will email you updates soon. Sorry it has been so long but I have lots of new things to share with you sis. :) Iam glad you have some friends there to ease the difficulties of a new move.

Umm Omar said...

May Allah make it all easy for you.

Roaches, yuck. I don't blame you. I can't take roaches, spiders, crickets, or mice. Any of those are dealbreakers for me. Finding a good housekeeper seems to be a universal problem.

أم ترافيس said...

I asked hubby about the nanny thing, he said if you find someone qualified/trustworthy it will cost you an arm and a leg more or less. About the housekeeper, you have to get someone from a neighbour or friend in the area that they trust, and even then follow them around the house, that kind of thing... as you know, it usually just goes from bad to worse with these people, I dont know why - dont they need the money?

I hope you feel better soon, call me anytime ukhti, I am just a call/short drive away if you need ANYTHING!

ps. maybe you can think about getting a (good) exterminator so you dont have to think about moving just yet. That is so much work, and you should rest and relax! oh ya but the stairs.... *sigh* Poor girl!

I love you!

Empress Anisa said...

Inspired- its good to hear from you! I know ur busy... drop me a line whenever you have some free time. Take care of you!

Umm Omar- your list is EXACTLY the same as mine- can't deal with any of those creatures. One sister here told me recently she was cooking and opened her kitchen window and forgot she left it open... her house guest? A nice fat rat! I would've had to pack my bags and leave until somebody caught it. Thank Allah, in this compound where I live they don't have that problem which is common in the city.

Umm Trav- thanks for the suggestions... yeah, nobody I know have a nanny so I'll tough it out, InshaAllah- would definitely not hire a complete stranger. But some days it's totally hard... well, you know my story.

Actually saw 2 flats the other night and one is very nice, MashaAllah- 3 bedrooms still but 1 1/2 bath which is totally fine with me. I can look out my diningroom window at the corner where the hospital- great plus if I ever need to take the kids... AND it's on the 2nd floor! I need that relief more than anything else.. better sooner than later so I can get settled before the hubby arrives and my possible summer guests and my other big summer event.... AND it's 700 LE cheaper!!!

I love you too my sister.. I really enjoyed our time together the other day... next time, lunch!

fad-fadat nour said...

Hello, sister. It's my first time to comment here, but I've been following your blog for a while now.

I'm an Egyptian. & in Egyptians defense, we were taught back at school that rural societies ( back in history we used to be a true rural society)have a "flexible" sense of time.
It's not that they don't respect you & your time, it's more of, they understand time differently. & people used to give dates like " we'll meet in the morning" not "at 11", so any time before noon is morning.. for some people :)

I know it's not a good thing, ever. But try not to get upset about it.

I wish you the best in Egypt.

The Red Sea area, is really wonderful, same in South Sinai & in Alexandria(where I live).

I hope I can be of any help to you :)

Empress Anisa said...

Fad-Fadat: I don't have a problem with someone showing up late morning if we gave a certain time but 3-5 hours late? Or don't show up AT ALL??? That's not nice nor fair. We all have lives to run so if I spent everyday waiting for people like this, when would I conduct the rest of my life? lol

A common courtesy call to say "hey, not coming today..." only takes a few seconds and can't kill anyone- especially when you own a cell phone!

Been to Alexandria during my first visit here- totally beautiful, MashaAllah- if I had friends up in that area, I would've opted for there, for sure!

Thanks for stopping by and reading... and feel free to contact me whenever you might be in this area. Send me ur email in the comments (won't publish) so that way I can send you mine....

Umm Ismail said...

MAsha allah I remember When i saw My First Egyptian Roach. I was like Damn you Roaches you even Survive Here. So i cut the Gass on And Fried Him. My Dh Said Astaaghfiallah!! you don't Burn Creatures that not your Job. Lol Ewwwwwwwww Roaches I ain't Scared I will stomp Them until my shoe is Filled and Wash them down the Drain, Sounds nasty but I don't like them I Raid Them ,I don't hate them I Raid Them. They Sale Raid in Egypt I have Used my Share of a Can or Two. lol
There is a Certain Area in Cairo Where the water taste Like Pure Salt Boiling want help ugh!! but i Quick boil with Water with in the city ain't to bad. Allahu aLlim Anisa I need you to Call as sister I go something to Tell ya.

It's a Surprise!!

Umm Ismail said...

About the Nanny or house Keeper Well all I can say is @You know Egypt

Mona said...

I'm glad your stuff made it across the ocean...Hope you get it asap I can just imagine. When I moved here we just had our luggage and a friend of ours was coming to Egypt 3 months after and was bringing 2 bags of ours for us and I Could. Not. Wait. InshaAllah it gets there quick and you get a roach free place asap.

fuzzy said...

Salaam sis, it seems exciting to move to a new country. Believe me with the weather in England as so,bre as it is i can't help dreaming of a flat in Egypt. Hope everything works out for you brilliantly inshaAllah. May Allah swt make everything easy. LOVe to read how you are getting on. Best of wishes, lots of love :)

Pixie said...

MashaAllah glad to know you have arrived safely and getting used to things. Love Pix

PerplxinTexan♥ said...

yumm, nothing like a great welcome- like some coacroaches.

I'm glad you arrived safe and get to those boxes ASAP amazing what you forget you 'need' after it's been away for so long.

Empress Anisa said...

Umm Ismail- you funny gal! Well, I can't take those thigs... forget about killin them to have em on my shoes! Eek!

Mona- yes, I can't wait to get my things... going nuts without my spices and usual surrounding things... the creatures of habit we are!

Fuzzy- Wa alaikum assalaam! The flats are cold! It could like 75 degress outside but inside you have on a heater! It's defintely something to get used to... but everybody told me I'll be complaining just the opposite when the summer steps in... but I prefer to be warm and take off clothes than to have on 15 different layers inside the house! ;)

My Ms. Pixie Dixie- yeah, Mommie trying to get settled and we're all doing better- can't wait to get into this other flat so I can finally relax! Soooo much going on- I'm going to need a vacation by the time I'm finished... hey, come visit me!!!

Perplxin- Yeah, whatta a wonderful, warm Egyptian welcome- roaches! lol
True though about SOME of the stuff but I totally remember about my spices when it comes time to cook!

Ihssan :) said...

Asaalamu Alaikum!
Everything sounds very exciting (minus the roach part!, lol)I don't blame you for wanting to move. For some reason the roaches seem way bigger there. I have also had bad experience with those cleaners (in Sudan, not Egypt). I don't want to generalize here because its not fair, but a lot of them are thieves. I had bad experience twice! Make sure you lock your valuables up.
Stay healthy inshAllah! :)

Lisa said...

I could only two weeks in an apartment where we had roaches. It was out of hand and they used to hobble up to the stove to see what was cooking. So I don't blame you!

Sounds like just pouring some of that bleach water on them would have done the trick, but you don't want to have to do that everyday.

I love that you and Umm Travis are making a habit of getting together! Hope the move goes smoothly!

queen said...

i think what you are doing is so exciting, i would love to do it, hope all is going well.

queen said...

i think that what you are doing is so exciting, i wish i had the guts and that level of imaan to do what you are doing, its great!

Empress Anisa said...

Ihssan- yes, I've heard MANY a horror story since I've been here from sisters I know that they were ripped off by the housecleaner= some of them had the same one and she helped herself the the silverware, US money (talking hundreds), clothes and whatever she could get her hands on- do these people fear Allah???

Lisa- yeah, I had one make its way up the side of the stove one day when I decided to make something quick- I never turned it on after that day... yuck! The egyptian water is like bleach- you smell as soon as you turn on the tap! They use to it to "clean" the water....

Queen- yeah, sis... trying to do the best I can for my kids- hence why I'm here. Gonna give it the "ole college try" and InshaAllah, hopefully with Allah's mercy, we can make it here. Whenever you can escape, come see me!!! Would LOVE to have you and your family (we can put mehendi on OUR FEET..... LOL)

Hajar said...

Assalamualaikum sis!

Gosh~! I'm glad the whole lot of you got there safe and sound! ^^ What's this talk about roaches? I used to be petrified of them ... now NO longer! I've developed a foolproof technique against the flying ones ... *you don't go messing with a batter unless you know what's good for you*. LoL~ So are you already in your spanking new roach-free apartment? Take care sis & send my hugs to the little darlings! I hope all of you are managing well!