Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Freej Soeleh

“You’re going to LOVE this place!” AdventureMan crowed from two continents and an ocean away. Our Kuwaiti friends’ son had just taken him and his father to eat in this restaurant, and it was a great experience.

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He was right. A couple months later, he took me there, and I loved it. It was a different experience for him, too, when he went with me, because with me, he could sit upstairs in the family section. 🙂

You would never guess a place so full of homages to Kuwaiti tradition would be next door neighbors to the Marina Mall. From some of the cabinets, you look directly over to the mall.

They make their own sweets, and very fine sweets they are. His huge pot is entirely copper, and he makes wonderful candies, which you can buy and take with you, and use for gifts – made in Kuwait!

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Pardon my indelicacy, but I love thoughtful decoration. This is the ladies room, and I am crazy about their huge bowl sinks – a wave to the past with the traditional sand and stone colors and materials:

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We have all the privacy in the world, although we are surrounded by families. By the way, this is not a great place for an intimate, romantic dinner. Children are everywhere, clearly welcome, and bouncing off the walls. It is noisy. (We don’t mind.) When you want a waiter, you press the call button on the wall next to the little windows, which open and close.

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At night – OK, this is hokey, but the truth is, I love it – they have a ceiling full of “stars”:

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One thing we really love is that you can get Kuwaiti foods here. We love trying different things. One of our favorites is the Fish at the Bottom of the Pot:

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Very shortly, pre-food food arrives – the beignets are light and sweet and irresistible:

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As you can see, the prices are reasonable:
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We have never ordered the camel milk:
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To get to the Freej Soeleh coming south on Gulf Road, turn in where you see that big old Kuwaiti Style hotel, I think it is the Al-Ghanim, and then take the first right onto what my friends call Salmiyya High Street. You take the last right going toward the Marina Mall just before the mall, which will take you right into a parking area. If you look on your right, you will see the Freej Soeleh.

If you are coming South on Gulf Road, take the exit that goes in front of Marina Mall and turn right just past the valet entrance to the Mall. You will see a parking lot – and the Freej Soeleh – on your left.

You can take the elevator up to the second floor, if you are a family. If you are bachelors, you can take the escalator up to the first floor. The food is good in either place. The family section is more colorful.

If you go early – like noon for lunch, six-thirty/seven for dinner – you will walk right in. If you go later, when the Kuwaiti families stream in, you may have to wait, but they have a great waiting area, and you can watch the caramel man make candy.

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Please, my western friends, if you go, dress modestly. This is a family place; most women are in abayas. I have never seen another western family here, but then we are all in cabinets, so that’s not such a surprise. It is a gem of an adventure in Kuwait.

I apologize that there are no photos of the main courses. There is always SO MUCH food. It comes, there is a frantic trying to organize the table so it has enough room for everything, and it all smells so good! You tend to just dive in.

The one jarring element is that when you are having appetizers, the tabbouleh, the muttabel, the hummus, they bring a plastic bag of bread on a plate. . . I guess I get spoiled down at the Mubarakiyya market, where the bread is always freshly made . . . I wish they had fresh hot bread, but the food itself is GOOD.

January 11, 2009 Posted by | Adventure, Cross Cultural, Eating Out, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Food, Kuwait, Living Conditions | 20 Comments

Kuwait Moonlight Magic

I should have guessed when I saw all the fishing boats gathering last night as the sun went down. As the day went all pink and lavender, and then deeper purple, you could see their lights bobbing not too far off shore.

Minutes later I cam back and was stunned – the moon was up, full and glimmering over the Gulf. It was magical.

“AdventureMan! Come look!” I called, because it is a great sorrow in our lives that many a full moon we have been in different cities. I don’t know why it matters to us, but it does. He will call me and say “there is a full moon tonight in Djibuti and we are not together!” or I will SMS him saying “there is a full moon tonight in Seattle, where are you?” There are times he will say “At least we are both on the same continent” or “At least we are both in the same time zone!” but it is still sad that we are not together. It matters to us, so to watch this great bright silver orb rise over the waters was a moment to be treasured.

There were wisps of clouds in the sky, so the moon is not sharp edged, but a little blobby. Nevertheless, it is a full moon and we are together. A good night to celebrate.

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January 11, 2009 Posted by | Beauty, Communication, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Marriage, Photos, Random Musings | 4 Comments