Saturday, November 23, 2013

3 Beautiful Things

  • My favourite way to start the day; morning coffee sitting outside in the sunshine. Winter here is my favorite season, with more clear days and blue skies than in the summer.
  •  "I've brought you lunch," says a kind parent of a girl I tutor for an hour on Saturdays; dropping off soup, steak, potatoes and mushrooms stuffed with spinach.  That's dinner sorted too!
  • Words from my friend Tania that touched my heart more than I can express. Today I was asked to be Godmother to little Polly. I feel truly honoured and I am going to bed feeling happy and blessed.

Monday, November 18, 2013

When it rains, it pours...

This was my drive home on the motorway today...

I contemplated swimming.

Now I'm safe at home I just want to stay under a blanket all evening and watch Downton...So I think I will!

I'm packing my goggles for tomorrow.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Only in Kuwait...

Flags line the roads and signs are up to welcome leaders of African and Arabian countries for the upcoming summit. A last minute decision by the Prime Minister was made to close schools this coming Tuesday to ease congestion on the roads. Great! Another day off...we teachers don't have enough!!!  
I made a sarcastic comment about the country and the number of holidays on my Facebook, asking where else in the world could be like this. The responses and comments came rolling in; days off in China due to pollution, rain days in Oman, visits from Bush in Dubai and Obama in Brunei ( even though he was a no-show)...and I lived in Uganda when due to election riots schools closed,so ok...Kuwait is not alone in announcing days off here, there and everywhere...
Then it should be no surprise that if this storm that is forecasted to hit in the next few days does actually arrive that the schools will close...again.

It will be an interesting few days.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Change of seasons in the desert

Autumn is nearly over here in the sandpit. Soon our air conditioners will be switched over to heaters to warm the cold tiled buildings. Pupils are now wearing winter uniforms to school and the International Award expeditions begin this weekend (it always rains during the Bronze desert hike!).
We've had a couple of early sprinkles of rain, just enough to break the humidity and a couple of electric storms, that try hard to be as aggressive as their African sisters but just don't quite have the wow factor. But, the real tale-tale sign that winter is arriving in the desert...

First world signs in a developing country.

Friday, November 8, 2013

What I talk about when I talk about Kuwait

I've not been very good at getting out during the week for my short runs; days off and weekends away (that take a few days to recover from!) are great but mess up the routine. But I have been consistent about plodding the pavement for my long weekend runs.

I ran 25.7km today. Why the.7 - well, it was converted from miles and I wasn't planning on doing a metre more than necessary! This marathon, my third, still seems like a VERY big challenge.
I was running with two male friends that are a LOT faster than this was a slow run for them...but I was so grateful for the company. We talk about news in Kuwait, talk about holidays but mostly we talk about running; races, training and injuries. Even at times when we are all lost in our own thoughts, the presence of company makes the run so much more enjoyable...and also I'm so much more relaxed.

The majority of the time in Kuwait I feel very safe, but running attracts some unwelcome attention here. The weirdos seems to come out...or more likely they have stayed out from the night before. So instead, I would much prefer to have the attention diverted to Colin, who runs in tiny flappy shorts and a vest! Haram! (I'm just envious as I'm running in black leggings...and it's still 27 degrees Celsius when we are running!)

My early morning weekend runs is one of my favorite things but it does show the best and worst of the sandpit. The beach which is covered in litter from BBQs and picnics, left to be picked up by the Bangladeshi workers,  rather than fill the empty bins nearby. The sunrises turn the sky from yellow, to orange, to red. The smell of pure sewage making us momentarily gag as we run. The blue skies that spill like a watercolour into the sea. The idiots on their motorbikes, taking advantage of the quiet roads to stand on their bikes and do circus tricks.The reward of a freshly squeezed orange juice sitting outside at the marina. The best and worst, but still my favorite time of day.

I have 6 weeks to go until Thailand. This week I am going to get serious!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Currently- November 2013

A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks. It is too early to pass comment on this read, (the reviews aren't great) but his past novels are some of my all time favourites. I recently read 1913 by Florian Illlies, which I picked up in Munich and was the most enjoyable and interesting book I've read in a while. It is particularly focused on European history for that year, so if you are intestine in that I would highly recommend it.

AFRICA. The BBC series narrated by David Attenborough. It is fabulous!

Training for-
Chaing Mai marathon in December. Today I ran my longest run ( since my two marathons at the start if the year), 24km. 42km still seems a looong way off! I'm a bit worried that I am not training seriously enough...and a friend warned me about doing more long runs alone ( as I'll be doing the marathon alone) so, although it won't be fun...or easy, this is what I'm going to have to do!

The cooler weather. We had a week of autumn; fluffy clouds and pink skies at night. I love this time of year, mainly because it means no more super early get-ups for runs!

Listening to-
The same 20 songs on my shuffle over, and over, and over again. I need to sort out my i-tunes and get some new running tunes.

(When I'm not running...) I love Bastille. They even make Miley Cyrus cool!

My about 20 minutes or so I'll be 31. Remember remember the 5th of November....
It's Islamic New Year so school is closed. A pretty decent birthday gift in itself!