Our five year adventure in Doha, Qatar ended June 1, 2012, but the memories will always remain. It's back to Texas where I have decided...Qatar isn't cornering the market on "quirky", as I once believed. Thanks for opening my eyes to the world, Doha!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ya Talkin' to Me?

As I was walking last night to the tunes of The Guess Who, I couldn't help but laugh to myself when "American Woman" came on. I felt like the people in this country were speaking directly to me through my iPod..."American woman, stay away from me, American woman, mamma let me be!". A few old posts came to mind where I'm sure such jibberings were going through their heads. Ok, so jibbering must not be a word because it has a big red wavy line on my end saying, "BONK, try again!". Sorry spell check, I like it, so it stays. Anyway, here are a few from the archives that might confirm that these sentiments were justified.

Two Big Little Words

A post about me hollering across Lulu's deli counter at a local woman to say "Thank you". Really, Sybil??

Hurry Up and Wait

This post is about going to the driver's license place over a two day span and then the nerve of the lady at the vision testing center telling me to come back the next day so that she could remedy their computer problem. Uh, homey don't think so. I might be a petite 5 footer, but I ain't a pushover. To put it mildly, I unleashed.

Another Lost Freedom

Just me being a rebel. Don't tell me what I can't do!

There was yet, another post (couldn't find, I have too many!) about the day the local guy hit the shopping cart that I was attached to in Landmark's parking lot. He obviously didn't want to be bothered with slowing down in his turn. He got out, checked his car for damage, then looked at me and said, "Ees goooood". Are you kidding me? I looked him in the eye and shook my finger in his face and said, "Ees not goooooood. You need to slow down!". Ok, so rumor has it that if I did that today, I'd be arrested. I'm trying really hard to refrain. Sort of.

American Woman ~ The Guess Who

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Kayla Get(s) a Life

I've been elected to map out my soon to graduate daughter's life. Offspring #3 will walk across the stage on May 8th to receive her diploma in Sociology. "Sociology?", you say, "What can she do with that?!". That's the million dollar question. It encompasses a broad field, and isn't one of those ready made degrees that you walk from the stage to the office, such as engineering, nursing, teaching, etc. Who said life is easy? Kayla has suggested to me that she would love to come to Qatar to work. Part of me wants to say, "Are you crazy? Not no, but heck no!" and part says, "What a great experience and opportunity that would be". I love it, but do I want my 22 year old little girl to be standing on her own in this country. What if our project ends and David and I move on? What then? Let go, I suppose.

Kayla's dream job: A personal assistant :D
Kayla's realistic job: Something that requires her uncanny ability to organize and energize people.

Let's see what I found in Qatar's morning newspapers...

She is female, but I'm not so sure about what purely Western means. How pure is pure? Oh well, she's too young for the job even though she does have superior communication skills. Trust me, as her mom, I can also vouch for her negotiation finesse and the pleasing personality part goes without saying. There, I said it.

Here we go, no doubt she would be foreign in this country...who's not? The only caveat, she's not an accountant.

Hmm, do I really want to put her in this position? Poor Ms Botheju is living and working in Doha and can't even go on vacation without asking the locals for permission? Scary, really scary. Maybe we need to rethink this.

Hold the press, I've found Plan B. Instead of finding Kayla a job, maybe I'll just find her a husband. I see a matrimonial ad in her future. Let me know your qualifiers, K.

ads from Gulf Times ~ Doha, Qatar

I'm Coming Out ~ Diana Ross

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Doha...Is the Price Right?

Come on down, you are the next contestant on...

The Price is Right!

OK, so I'm not Bob Barker and I'm not so sure that here in Doha the price is right, but you can play along if you so desire. I'm to the point in my Qatar stint that I just throw it in the basket, thank goodness, because some of these prices can be shocking. Note: I used to be that shopper that not only did the item have to be on sale, I had to have an extra "cents off" coupon. Ha, those days are long gone.

No Southeast Texas "Party Time" PORK sausage here, so Hillshire Farms BEEF sausage will have to do for that occasional chicken and sausage gumbo. Price: ?????

Butterball "Italian" turkey. Don't ask me why, I thought a turkey was a turkey. Anywho, the grand total per pound = ?????

One 1.2 kilo chicken, which is a whopper in these parts of the woods. At all of 2.64 lbs, my gumbos are a bit smaller these days. The price for this whopper rings up at ?????

Moving on to USA ground meat, which is a hot commodity (for me, anyway). It's not always available, but when it is I stock up. A one pound package will set you back ?????

Kraft pepper jack cheese weighing in at 12oz. Yep, this is the real deal from America...not an impostor like some. The price = ?????

Here we have sliced Provolone cheese from the deli. Pay the lady ????? per pound.

I'm exhausted from all those kilo to pounds and riyals to dollars conversions. Feel free to check my math and inform me of my errant ways. This was just the meats and deli section.

To be continued...

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Finally, Good Directions

Once upon a time, just three years ago, we felt "lost" in Doha. Well, not anymore. Maybe you already know, but in case you didn't, there is a ministry of everything here in Qatar. Apparently someone has lit a fire under the Ministry of Give Me Some Directions. Not only are we getting an abundance of directional advice, but street signs are popping up everywhere along with roundabouts receiving official names with signs. The smart alec "turn right at the mosque" line will surely become obsolete. There's a downside to everything.

Good Directions ~ Billy Currington

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

It's Just a Matter of Time

I wish I could say this is an unusual scene that I drove past this week, but it happens so often that it's just part of the scenery. Roadside art in Qatar. When we moved to Doha we were told, "It's not if you get in an accident, it's when". Comforting words for newbies. So it seems David and I are driving the Tahoe on borrowed time. Could my up close and personal encounter with a parking garage column months back count for my share of incidents? And, David has had a collision with a flying rock that left a ding in the windshield. Or, perhaps our friends have absorbed our share of fender benders. I'm not naming names, but they do have a blog in my left hand column. I'll just call them Tina and Mike. The clock is ticking. Can we beat it?

It's Just a Matter of Time ~ Brooks Benton

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Windmill Powered?

I'm not sure what makes this bakery "Automatic".

Just for the record, they do have pretty good cookies.

This blog is such a learning experience for me. I'm not usually one to just throw info out there without delving into it a bit first (ok, ok, no doubt I have been guilty at times). I was going to suggest that perhaps the windmill plastered above the building was the reason it was called "automatic". You know, a little electricity to fire up those ovens. Well, little did I know, until I Googled windmill...

"The main use is for a grinding mill powered by the wind, reducing a solid or coarse substance into pulp or minute grains, by crushing, grinding, or pressing"


Well, shut my mouth. I've always equated windmills with energy and did not know that they are also used to pulverize grain. (Obviously, I wasn't the most studious of students.) Hmm, grain, baked goods...I'm seeing a connection here. So maybe the windmill is well placed, after all. Still not so sure about the automatic part, though.

The Windmill Song

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Perfect "Cylincer"

I don't know about you, but when I saw the word "cylincer", I immediately translated that to the word "silencer" in my head. Now, I have a reactive mind, not a methodical one, therefore I was already envisioning Bond, James Bond stealthily hunting his prey on the streets of Doha. Putting my mind in reverse, I realized that maybe they were maybe meaning silencer of the "muffler" persuasion. Phew, close call. Case closed.

Goldfinger - Shirley Bassey

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Yard of the Month Follow Up

Quite some time back, I gave out a yard of the month award to someone in the neighborhood who shall remain anonymous (could that be because I don't know who the heck owns the joint?). Anyway, I thought I'd post an update on their cool sod, which is still my favorite in Doha. Cheers go out to the gardener that is responsible for its thriving condition.

Whispering Grass - The Ink Spots

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Don't Worry, I'm Happy

So, just how do I follow up on a blog post about writer's block when I still have nothing flowing from my brain? You know me so well, surely I'll come up with something no matter how lame it might be. You see, I'm really on the spot here. My son, Dustin, called me from Tennessee while visiting his grandparents for spring break.

Dustin: "Mom, what's going on?"
Me: "Nothing...what do you mean?"
Dustin: "JoJo says the reason you haven't blogged in a few days is because you're depressed."

So, now if there's a void in my blog, it's due to depression. Oh wow, nothing like a little pressure to throw something on paper. I'm fine, JoJo! Yes, I did have a ONE day melt down, but it's out of my system and I am, once again, happy in my bubble. Please do not equate blank spaces for melancholy. Don't worry, JoJo, I'm happy.

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Monday, March 22, 2010


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Friday, March 19, 2010

Bust Out the Bengay

Trust me, these old men will need it after a day at the park. David and his team mates won two games today at the ASD Booster Club tournament, which earned them an 8:00am game in the morning. Yippee. We will be lucky if these guys can roll out of bed in the morning. Nice job, guys!

Center Field (Put Me in Coach)

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