Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Real Time Sandstorm

I’m in my living room, currently the only air conditioned room in the house, the other area A/C is broken, and even in the living room, things are hotting up. Packing boxes, suddenly the light dims and I look outside.


Oh thank God! You might think that is a strange reaction, but when I am packing, any distraction will do. And the light is fantastic! Who knows when I will see another sandstorm rolling in like this? I shoot lots of shots, then scoot off the balcony because it is heading right for me.


I won’t show you what it looks like now. You know what orange looks like. It is totally a bright ochre orange outside. The shoreline is visible, but dimly. The street lights have come on and the smarter drivers have their headlights on. Just in time for drive-time home – be careful out there, Kuwait!

May 14, 2009 Posted by | Beauty, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Weather | 11 Comments

Sanitary Germans

After all my years living in so many different places, I’m fairly blase about toilets. In Tunisia, there were no such thing as public toilets, and while exploring Tunisia, we always had to look for “the potty in the wadi”, i.e. a bridge with no-one in sight. I would run, pee as quickly as I could, and finish just before some curious child – or children – showed up. No matter how remote the place, I can’t remember a single stop that a child didn’t come running about sixty seconds after we stopped.

So I got a big smile at the public toilet in Germany – they started installing these about 20 years ago – that even cleans itself. I thought “I wonder how long these would last in Kuwait?” where they could put people our of jobs.


Yesterday, I used a public toilet in a very nice mall in Kuwait, but when I got there, a woman – I am guessing the “cleaner”, and I put it in quotes for a reason, was stretched out and sleeping. I looked in several stalls, no toilet paper, no problem, I carry my own. It didn’t seem all that clean, no paper for drying hands, either, and as I am leaving she holds out her hand and asks how I am, how is my health, etc. I usually tip – but I didn’t tip yesterday, why tip someone who is not doing the work she is paid to do? She didn’t even stand up, just held up her hand!

May 14, 2009 Posted by | Charity, Cultural, Customer Service, ExPat Life, Hygiene, Living Conditions | 14 Comments