Thursday, June 30, 2005

Suspisions Confirmed

During my final week at school, the kids have all gone home and the teachers and staff have been cleaning, organizing, planning, etc. For two days I worked in classrooms and for three days I worked in the library. I always thought that working as a librarian might possibly be the most boring job imaginable. All my suspisions were confirmed this week. I might shoot myself if I had to do that everyday for the rest of my life.
No offense to all you librarians out there. I'm glad that there are people out there that enjoy jobs like this. A blessing on you and your family. May you all live long and prosperous lives. May you all enjoy your occupation till the day you die. May your children and your children's children follow in your footsteps, so that I never am forced to take up where you left off. The Lord bless and keep you.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

More fun with nicknames

For my birthday, Esther bought me a gift certificate to my favorite coffee shop here in Maadi, Grecos. In true Esther form, the certificate is addressed to Stinky Lee.
Yesterday, I went into Grecos. I'm fairly regular there, so they all recognize me but don't actually know my name. I ordered my drink and handed the cashier my certificate. He looks at it, smiles, and says "Good morning Miss Stinky!" Only with his Egyptian accent it sounds more like Miss Stanky. It was all I could do to not bust out laughing. I didn't correct him. (1) It's just plain funny, (2) how do you explain it all to a non-native English speaker, and (3) I always wanted a secret identity.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Music Video

My genius never ceases to amaze me. I had a brilliant idea for a music video, if I ever do one. Okay, envision me, Sara, Esther, Angella, and Kim rollerskating through the streets of Cairo dressed in 80s attire. It would be the ultimate silly willy girls club shining moment! I truly am a genius.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Another year

I have now been 25 years old for ten minutes. This birthday doesn't feel like a birthday. I guess I'm used to being home for my birthday and this one has creeped up on me and, even now, doesn't feel real.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Post-Party Poetry

Last night I went to a going away party for my friend Markus. I had a great time. Everyone seemed to have a great time. There was music, dancing, good food, plenty to drink, and, most importantly, some of my favorite people in the entire nation of Egypt. I had a few drinks and felt the "agape love" the entire night. Later in the evening, four of us went out dancing and continued to have a good time. The time passed quickly, as it always does when you dance the night away, and before I knew it my freinds dropped me off at the apartment at around 5:15am. But after such a fun night, it was hard to go to bed. It's nice to recount the events of the evening and relaugh at people jokes and the silly pictures we took. When I recounted the events of the night I inevitably came back to the fact that my friend Markus was leaving. This thought made melancholy. Keeping in mind that the drinks had not yet left my system, I was inspired to blog last night. I sat down at my computer and had no idea what to write. I was also beginning to get very tired. I wrote a poem or at least the start of a poem. It was about wishing people could stay and remembering all the things you forgot to tell people and then they are gone and it's too late. I remember thinking last night that it was beautiful, just beautiful. But I was too tired to finish it and so I saved it and (thank the Lord) I didn't publish it.

This morning I woke up, showered, started a new book, and then remembered my blog. So I got on the computer and read my "masterpiece". Wow. DELETE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Moral of the story, never ever publish blogs written while under the influence of alcohol or sleep deprivation.

As a side note, the incident made me fondly think back on a night in Augusta when Angella, John, and I sat at Stillwater Tap Room writing peotry together. Genius, it was sheer genius.

Summer Reading

This summer will be a summer of lots and lots of reading. I haven't had time to pick up a book since Christmas and my brain is starving for it. Any reccomendations on some good books? Fiction, non-fiction, serious, goofy, historical, biographical, whatever. But I'm not really into legal books, like John Grisham stuff, and ABSOLUTELY NO SCARY BOOKS, particularly anything that has to do with psychotic people and serial killers. I don't know why I can't handle this stuff, but I can't. I can do war books that describe death, I can do books that recount deaths from horrible accidents and medical conditions. But when it comes to people who kill other people for no apparent reason or for no understandable reason, I just freak out. I can't take it. Well, all that to ask you for good book reccomendations.

Right now I am reading a book called My Forbidden Face. It is about a Afgani girl of about 16 who lives through all the wars and political changes in her country. The book particularly talks about the Taliban take over. It is a true story. It is a good book. It is eye opening. It is depressing. There is one quote from it I particularly liked.
Joy and sorrow are sisters.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005


I heard this quote on TV today. I liked it. I thought I would share it.

"It's the sense of touch, the sense of touch we miss so much that we crash into each other just to feel something."

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

1:30am attempts at poetry

I thought I finished you off
I chewed you up
I ate every crumb
Till there was no more,
No more of you to tease me
Only now it's me your eating
But I finished you off
I thought.

I thought I finished you off
I fought the fight
I saw you falling down
Till there was no more,
No more of you to taunt me
Only now it's me your haunting
But I finished you off
I thought.

I thought I finished you off
I wrote a book on you
Revealed your lies and schemes
Till there was no more,
No more false hope in my eyes
Only now this heart betrays me
I just wanted to finish you off
I thought.

Saying Our Goodbyes

It seems that in the expat community in Cairo this is the time of year when everyone goes their separate ways. Some people are relocated by their jobs, some are finishing school and moving on to a new school/job, some travel for the summer, and some just seem to disappear without a word. Whatever the reason, I've been going to quite a few bon voyage parties lately. It kind of feels like college again. The end of the year, so many friends graduating and moving on to the next chapter of their life. Everyone's happy and a little bit sad too. You promise to keep in touch with all your friends, but secretly wonder if you will and if they will. Sigh.
I know that it's good that we all progress and move on to what's next, but it's so dramatic here. It's not just one or two friends leaving. It's like half to two/thirds of your friends going in a span of a month and a half. It's wierd, honestly I don't like it. But such is life.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

personal theology quiz

I found this quiz from visiting Pete's website and I have finally gotten around to taking the quiz myself. Some of the questions could be taken in different ways so I was un sure of how to answer them. Some of the questions were about theologians that I had never heard of. So my results might not be completely accurate, but the emergent/postmodern does sound like me.

Result of Quiz :: What's your theological worldview?
created by svensvensven

You scored as Emergent/Postmodern.
You are Emergent/Postmodern in your theology. You feel alienated from older forms of church, you don't think they connect to modern culture very well. No one knows the whole truth about God, and we have much to learn from each other, and so learning takes place in dialogue. Evangelism should take place in relationships rather than through crusades and altar-calls. People are interested in spirituality and want to ask questions, so the church should help them to do this.

Emergent/Postmodern 82%
Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan 79%
Reformed Evangelical 61%
Neo orthodox 57%
Fundamentalist 57%
Modern Liberal 54%
Roman Catholic 50%
Classical Liberal 46%
Charismatic/Pentecostal 43%

What's your theological worldview?created with

Thursday, June 16, 2005

A sleepover with 6 year olds

I am currently at a sleep over for a bunch of 5-8 year olds. At the end of the school year the kids get a big sleep over party at the school. It hasn't been bad so far. We had water fights, games, food, and they now watching a movie. So hopefully, it will continue to go this well and no kids will wake us up in the middle of the night with "I want my mommy" or "I had an accident" or "I think I'm gonna throw up" or anything like that. And the upside of all this is that this party means that the end of the school year is nigh! One more week of classes and one week of whatever teachers do at the end of the school year and I am free for the summer!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Egyptian Crazy

I was just thinking that I haven't given you guys any glimpses into Egyptian life lately. So here are a few of the typical Egyptian scenarios.

Earlier this week, I was on my way to work when a taxi spotted me and started yelling to get my attention. I wanted a lift so I went over to him. This is our conversation.
Cab Driver: Izayik, ya Sara?!!" (that's arabic for how are you Sara).
Me: I'm fine (I'm kind of used to people thinking that I'm Sara and I didn't feel like arguing so I just got in the cab)
Cab Driver: You are not Sara, you are Sara's friend.
Me: You're right
Cab Driver: What is your name?
Me: Dottie (I do actually recognize this guy and remember that he has given me a ride at least once, maybe twice before, but it has been about three months since)
Cab Driver: You want to go to the school?
Me: That's right. Road 11 and Damascus Road.
(He starts driving)
Cab Driver: You married?
Me: No.
Cab Driver: You live with mother and father?
Me: No.
Cab Driver: You should marry an Egyptian, but only a Christian one. I'm a Chiristian!
Me: no comment
silence for a minute or two
Me: How is your family?
Cab Driver: Very good. I have one son.
Me: (smile) That's nice.
Cab driver: Dottie, I love you. You are very, very good. Sara is very beautiful, very, very pretty. I see her walking down the street.
Dottie: yes, she is very pretty.
Cab Driver: Call me if you ever need a driver to go to Alexadria or anywhere else on holiday.
Dottie: Ok, thanks. Bye.

This is a funny quote from a Brazilian friend living here
"Esther, there are many kinds of crazy. Egyptian crazy is waking up early and yelling in loud things (meaning loud speakers, and refering to the islamic prayers that are boomed throughout the city about five times a day)."

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Small Victories

Slowly, but surely, this computer retard is figuring out how to tweak things on her blog. So I'll probably be playing dress up with my blog for a little while.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Wake Me

This song has been on my brain today.

There is a dream that I get lost in
It's everyday of my life
Everything here comes in so loud and clear
And I never think to think twice
I try to wake up, to feel the real above me
But still I sleep walk through these motions of the mind
Until one alarming day
When heaven's first chair trumpet plays
And this whole world gets, finally,
Fully redefined
It feels just like dreaming
I almost believe it
Just tell me I'll wake up
Forever one day
And it's just temporary
The things that I'm seeing
Till You touch my shoulder and wake me
Would You wake me forever someday?
I try to wake up, to feel the real above me
But still I sleep walk through these motions of the mind
Until one alarming day
When heaven's first chair trumpet plays
And love rings like a dinner bell,
Like a wake up call
Like a fire alarm
Will You wake me forever oneday?
I don't really have any fully formed thoughts on why this song is running through my head now and the significance of it (so prepare for me to ramble somewhat incoherently). But as a person who believes in more than this physical, temporal world, I love this song.
My last blog was about how I tend to zone out of reality quite regularly. To me, this song is about our struggle to not be so zoned in on our "reality" on this physical world. And it is a struggle. It's all about balance. We are here for a reason. So we do need to be an active part of this physical world, but it should be in perspective. There is a whole other reality out there. We, for the most part, don't see it. But it's there. It's more real, more lasting, more crucial than our "reality".
So that's my thoughts on that. Any body else have some thoughts?

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Zoning Out

It's been said before, but it never ceases to amaze me how our greatest strengths are our greatest weaknesses as well.
I was sitting at a cafe along the Nile tonight with Rosemary. The sun was setting, there was a lovely breeze, and I had a fresh mango juice. I was completely relaxed and disconnecting from the rest of the world. That ability to disconnect is one of my great strengths and greak weaknesses. I can be in a crowd of people and not see any of them, not be affected by them. It's good because the world around me can be stressed out, angry, sad, out of order, whatever, but I remain stress-free, peaceful, and laid back. It also gives me the ability to stay absolutely in tune with what is going on inside me, which helps me deal with my "issues" fairly swiftly.
The down side of this, is that I can spend too much time disconnected. I spend too much time with an inward focus. Friends around me might need me, but I'm too disconnected to notice sometimes. Also I might not get as much accomplished as I would like, because I'm spending too much time "zoned out". I always have all these goals of things I would like to accomplish with music or working on teaching stuff or Arabic or church stuff, etc., but I always seem to fall short of my own expectations.
I know that I need some disconnect time, but there must be a balance. Maybe I set my expectations too high, sometimes. But sometimes, I'm just plain avoiding life.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Sore Spots

We are all familiar with our sore spots (for the most part). We know where they are. We know that when they are touched, we will most likely do something uncontrollable and out of character. They are painful, ugly, and no fun in general. We dread the day when some unsuspecting character rubs that spot the wrong way and unleashes our beasts.
Off the top of my head, some of my personal sore spots include....
My family. Don't mess with them. The quickest way to make me plot your demise is to hurt someone in my family. The second quickest is flirting with my little sister.
Bossing me around. Generally, I'm laid back and open to doing what others prefer. But the moment I feel you are demanding me to do things your way, I instantly resist. I enjoy my independence and freedom. If you want me to do things your way, be very subtle and polite about it or your not going to get very far.
These are the two big ones for me that I've known about for a long time and still struggle with.
Last night, however, I discovered a new one. My cooking. I never knew I could be so sensitive about food, but I can. I love cooking, but I love cooking right. I don't cook every day. The reason for that being that when I cook a meal it is like a five hour ordeal. It is like art work. I love it, but it is very consuming and I just can't possibly do it all the time. Anyhow, so I took the time to prepare this meal for a group of friends. I was so excited about it and it was super fun. But when people arrived I actually felt nervous. "Oh God, what if they don't like what I cooked? What if I didn't cook enough? What if they have an allergic reaction?" So during the meal it was actually impossible for me to relax. My mind is racing. Who looks like they are enjoying it? Is anyone not eating? I made a mental note of every person who complimented the food and who didn't. Wow, I'm psychotic. To make it worse. One of my poor guests made the tragic mistake of adding something to my vegetarian masterpiece. No it wasn't salt and pepper or any seasoning. It was canned meat. He brought canned meat from his house and dumped it all over my art. I thought I would die. All last night, and even still today, I steamed. Part of me is still steaming. It's that spot. That spot that I don't want anyone to mess with.
So I'm trying to keep it in perspective. No doubt, it was rude. But when have I ever cared much about rude. I'm the girl who likes to burp loudly in public places. I know next to nothing about Miss Manners rules of polite behaviour. I don't care about what other people think for the most part, when it comes to silly little society rules. So why am I so pissed at this guy for not following the rules of society? Why do I feel like it would have been better if he had just spit in my face? So he wanted tuna. So what. It's his meal. I made it for my guests to eat and enjoy, not to eat and wish that they had something else instead. It just goes to show my impure motives, my pride, my rough edges that need some sanding. Need sanding or not, I don't think I'll have it in me to cook for my friends for awhile. Sure I want to grow, but I'm not a massochist (is that spelled right?). I don't go looking for people to insult my brother just so it will give me a chance to grow. Sigh. When did I become such a nut case?
Does everybody just get crazier as they get older or is it just me?

A week or two ago Sara and I were talking about our "psychological disorders" and how every woman has them. In fact, if you don't have them, are you really even a woman? We decided that our psychological problems are what give us our feminine charm. So men, enjoy your clarity.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

News Flash

Apparently there are still people out there who are unaware. But believe it or not, there are in fact other sources of protein besides meat. And that's all I have to say about that.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005


Have I mentioned that I love teaching? I had such a good day today. Today I taught a math class, a Bible class, and a social studies class. The math class was just exhilerating. I was teaching first graders how to add and subtract two-digit numbers. This is a totally new concept to these kids, but they all got it... with no problems! Even the little girl who struggles everyday in math. It just clicked and they had no problems. It felt so good. Also, my Bible lesson went well. The kids were focused (well as focused as a seven year old can be). I was enthusiatic about the lesson (it was on encouraging others). And Social Studies was another success. The kids were again focused and on task and enjoyed the work I gave them. Of course all of this is not really important to all of you. You're probably reading this and saying "whoopedy-doo, Dottie." But to me it is really, really satisfying. I really have found my place.