Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Travel Mercies

My trip back to Kuwait started off badly – an hour and a half on a rainy, occasionally flooded interstate highway, crawling along between cars and big trucks. When, occasionally, the traffic got moving, I was beset by water cascading off these big huge trucks barrelling along – and at the same time, when you need to switch lanes, these big truckers are the ones who are going to let you in.

Check-in was a breeze – and I got a surprise. I wasn’t on my normal flight out of Amsterdam. I was on a much earlier flight. As usual, I sat in a secluded spot in the terminal and made my farewell calls. When friends and family wish me safe travels, I always ask them to keep me in prayer, for safe travels and for travel mercies. Travel mercies are blessings you haven’t even though of, but God knows, and can bless you in marvellous and amazing ways when you ask for travel mercies. He gives you protection – and more. He gives you travel BLESSINGS, if you have the eyes to see.

Unfortunately, my flight was delayed out of Seattle, and I had to RACE for this next flight, but made it – al hamdullah – and had an uneventful flight home.

Arriving at 5:30 p.m. is a whole different world from arriving at 10:30 p.m. Especially if you have been able to grab some sleep on the flight in, you have energy and time! Instead of arriving home feeling like something the cat dragged in, you arrive home feeling leisurely! Thanks be to God! What a travel mercy!

And thanks to all my friends and family keeping me wrapped in prayer. Your prayers were answered, bountifully! Thanks be to God!

Good friends cared for the Qatteri Cat while I was gone. When I walked in the door, there was no neurotic, needy Qatteri Cat. His coat didn’t have any knots in it (a sign he has been depressed and not doing his grooming.) No, he was friendly and balanced. I could see he had been well cared for, and a part of me is even a little jealous! I can see by QC’s behavior that they spent time with him; I know he really likes these people. Another Thanks be to God, a no-guilt return, the Qatteri Cat looks GOOD. Thanks be to God for all of you who prayed me safely home, and Thanks be to God for the sweet people who cared for QC.

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December 6, 2007 Posted by | Community, ExPat Life, Friends & Friendship, KLM, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Relationships, Seattle | 13 Comments

Christmas Parties: Make Your Own Boursin

You can do it! You will be astonished at how easy it is, especially if you have a food processor. This is SO good, and also very fattening. You can make it ahead of time, and it will last quite a while – weeks – in the refrigerator.

8 ounces unsalted butter, room temp
16 ounces cream cheese, room temp
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon oregano
1/3 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon marjoram
1/4 teaspoon dill weed

Mix together until all is well blended. Serve in ramekin or form into a ball.

May be rolled in (choose one):

coarsely ground pepper
chopped walnuts
chopped almonds
chopped olives

as a variation. Serve with crackers.
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December 6, 2007 Posted by | Christmas, Cooking, Entertainment, ExPat Life, Holiday, Recipes | , , , | 7 Comments

Discovering the truth about St. Nicholas

There is a most wonderful website that is a perfect place to explore on this, the Feast of St. Nicholas. It is called The St. Nicholas Center and it has the stories, and all kinds of art work depicting the life and works of St. Nicholas of Bari.

No, the St. Nicholas that we all think of, the big roly-poly guy with eight tiny reindeer – he’s a modern creation. The real St. Nicholas is revered for his generousity, his love of giving, his loving protection of children, and his care for sailors and those at sea. He is believed to have lived in what was a part of Greece, and is now Turkey.

One of the things I love the best about this good man is that he did his good deeds in secret, not wanting any earthly reward. You can read more about him The Legends of St. Nicholas, HERE. In the last photo, he even looks Greek, or Turkish, or . . . Arab!

There are many many more images of St. Nicholas at the website above. What I love about them is that they are a far cry from that fat guy who thinks Christmas is all about getting what you want. St. Nicholas understands that the joy is in the GIVING.

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Have your own secret St. Nicholas celebration – do something nice for someone and DON’T TELL ANYONE! 😉 Happy, Happy St. Nicholas Day!

December 6, 2007 Posted by | Arts & Handicrafts, Community, Cross Cultural, Holiday, Relationships, Spiritual, Turkey | , , | 3 Comments