I’ve officially completed my first week here. By now I can say I am more adjusted and starting a routine. Despite all the beloved familiarities, I am still learning and experiencing new things, masha Allah.
My first few days here were spent at my mother and father in law’s home, mostly recuperating from the travel and enjoying some of the best food I’ve ever tasted. My mother in law is one of the best cooks I know, wallah. Already I am missing the varied vegetable and meat dishes, with plentiful rice and bread.
One of the new things I had the chance to try was a dish called ‘sharayah’. Basically it is cut spaghetti noodles, that you add milk and sugar to taste and eat for breakfast. It wasn’t so bad! Definitely filling.
Even though I hadn’t spent much time with my parents in law before, being there felt so comfortable and homey. In the evenings sometimes Tant Amal (mama’s BFF who lives on the floor below) would come up and together we would watch dramatic serials on TV. Their favorite seemed to be an Indian-produced one (voiced over in Arabic), whose main heroine was named ‘Solani’. It warmly reminded me of the days in my very early childhood when my own mom would watch her soap operas after I came home from school.
Shukurah has been reunited with her nanny who is really an unofficial auntie by now. She has small children of her own who play with Shukurah; she adores them. She spends plenty of time with them while I work during the week, so they really are like an extended family (which is so much a part of the main fiber of Egypt and Eastern countries in general).
On Saturday my husband and I shifted to a furnished rental apartment for 10 days. The main reason for this was because I was supposed to start back to work, and the internet connection at his parents’ home isn’t strong enough for it. Our permanent apartment right now has been in the process of renovations, so it is not yet equipped for habitation; but in shaa Allah by the beginning of next week we will be transitioning over there. A couple days ago we went and priced appliances to get the main things we need for basic living, then will add furniture and décor in order of priority over the coming weeks.
Interestingly, this temporary apartment is in the same building and is the same floor plan as the one we stayed in last April. In fact, the sofa set and bedroom furniture is identical as well! So that is a nice sense of nostalgia also.
Right now my routine consists of working from 4 PM to 1 AM Monday through Friday, spending weekends with family, and playing with Shukurah during the day before my shift starts if not running errands and getting things done for the apartment. There will be a lot of exciting details to share starting next week, in shaa Allah. Until then I am doing my thing, resting and getting ready for the fun of decorating a new home from scratch!