Tag Archives | The National

Share a Fridge

Eid mubarak! The long days of Ramadan have passed, and now it’s the time for celebration. We’re in New York already, and still in the hazy fugue-like state of jet lag (compounded by having been in Bangkok ten days ago); I wake up in the middle of the night and am not entirely sure which continent I’m on.  In the Union Square farmer’s market this morning, however, I heard people speaking Arabic as they picked over some gorgeous tomatoes; I expect there are Eid feasts happening all over the city.

Last week in The National I wrote about a great community service endeavor that started, as many great ideas do, with a really simple gesture: a few women in Dubai found an empty fridge, put it in a easily accessible place, ran an extension cord to it, and began stocking it with juice, laban, fresh fruit, and water, for the men who work outside in the steamy days of full summer.

The idea caught on and before you know it, there were “sharing fridges” everywhere. Some of the fridges will be decommissioned after Ramadan, but some of them may stay in place, stocked entirely through volunteer efforts. I wonder if such an idea could ever catch on in the States? Would people honor the idea that the fridges are for those in need, not just any random passerby?  You can read my article here, and check out the Sharing Fridge facebook page here. Could your community support such a project?

Continue Reading · on July 6, 2016 in Abu Dhabi, religion

Techambivalent

Let me say first that I have a bit of an internet obsession. I stay way too connected to faraway friends on Facebook and I am a too frequent visitor to Tom and Lorenzo. My books float through the ether from Amazon and land in my kindle, like Mike Teevee in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but without remaining pocket-sized.

I tell you these things so that you’ll see my tech ambivalence: I love the internet and I am also sure that we’re going to end up (or we already are) utterly co-opted by it, so much so that any complaints about “loss of privacy” are utterly besides the point.

That ambivalence is the subject of this week’s column in The National, which you can read here.

Through a series of coincidences, the great god google recently unearthed some vintage family photos, which is making me feel quite fond of the machine that is eroding my private life (apparently with my permission).

It found me riding a bicycle; I remember both bicycle and dress (red velvety corduroy), but I have no memory of being so dangerously close to flashing people as I pedaled. red_bike_Wilmette

And google also showed me this picture of my younger brother, now a Hollywood bigshot but at the time apparently planning on a career as a landscaper: backyard

If google can find that level of adorableness for you, how can you not love it?

Continue Reading · on June 17, 2016 in Abu Dhabi, Children, family, tech life, The National

Nothing Ever Dies on the Internet

I’m still playing ketchup with nablopomo, which sounds a bit like something you’d order in a Mexican restaurant, doesn’t it?

You can read today’s post in Abu Dhabi’s newspaper, where I’m writing about the eternal conflict between innocence (my almost thirteen year old son) and experience (me, aka cynical mommy).  Youth and innocence wants to believe that his friends would never, ever spread anything of his across the internet. Cynicism and bitterness says…nothing ever dies on the internet, so be careful.

Shockingly, I don’t think he believes me.

You can read the piece here

Continue Reading · on November 9, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, family, growing up, Kids, NaBloPoMo, Parenting, tech life, The National

Pompeii

 

I wrote about our trip to Pompeii in The National the other day. Wandering those ancient sites makes a gal wonder about what will be left behind when our civilization disappears–and I have to say, the answers that come to mind aren’t exactly awe-inspiring.  Click here for the piece … and here is some visual accompaniment. (Because really, what’s the point of having a blog if you can’t bore people you can’t see with your family travel photos?)

IMG_6833the entrance to Pompeii

IMG_6807mosaic floor from the public baths in Herculaneum

IMG_6802

fresco and mosaic on the interior wall of a building in Herculaneum

IMG_0921pillars in the marketplace, Pompeii

IMG_6835plaster cast of a body found in Pompeii

IMG_0900the site of Herculaneum with the current town of Erculano behind it, and behind that, The Volcano

Continue Reading · on October 28, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, expat, Kids, The National, Travel

Saturday’s Snapshot (surat al-sabat): لقطة السبت

Okay, sure, things have been a little slow over here these days.  There’s been nothing here but ostriches and while ostriches are always appropriate, sort of like champagne, I can understand that looking at the lady ostriches settling into the dust might be a little bit dull after a while.

I did have a column in The National last week, about forks, so you could click over and read that if you’ve got nothing else to do.  And I am guest editing on the yeahwrite site, (last week and this) where there is a give-away featuring the book that I’m in–and what do you mean, you didn’t know I had an essay in the number-one-with-a-bullet-new-release-on-amazon?  You could click right over there and order yourself a copy of You Have Lipstick On Your Teeth–hell, order two, maybe three–because it’s wicked funny and you might want to share. Or have a copy in every room. Whichever.

There are posts coming – about Liam and his sudden, not entirely pleasant, decision to have become a surly teen-ager pretty much overnight; and about this new house we live in, in the equivalent of the Abu Dhabi suburbs, where almost every day a new thing goes wrong, causing us to engage fully and substantially with what you might call the “fix-it” culture of the Emirates. Or make that the lack of a fix-it culture of the Emirates.

In any case. More posts coming soon (I know, I know, your life has been incomplete, a dull void of nothingness, because mannahattamamma hasn’t written anything new).  In the meantime, another animal picture from Kenya. This one has a little more, shall we say, bite to it.  You’re welcome.

IMG_0491

 

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Continue Reading · on September 21, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, expat, family, growing up, Kids, surat al-sabt saturday snapshot, Travel

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