I woke up hungry this morning and waited for the dogs to get up so I could walk them. Piggy was hungry too and told the chair on the other side of the table just as much. I was going to feed them at 6:30 before I went to breakfast but Sparky wouldn’t get down from the chair. I read some more and then went to eat ten minutes early. The door to the kitchen wasn’t open yet and the croissant bin looked just like I left it yesterday. I grabbed one to-go and ate a bowl of corn flakes.
I brought a boiled egg back to the room and it did wonders for Sparky’s appetite, but made Piggy miss out on her portion of the yolk. I walked them at 9 and again at 11. I published two posts and Caleb texted me at 2pm to come get him. I was taking the Juffair exit when I was passed by a suburban – perhaps that’s what the wide exit lane is for. I met him at the corner, where I drop him off in the mornings, and he tells me that he got invited up to Coleman’s room, so I park the car and we walk into Almoayyed Plaza apartments – the side door, not the large one for the Dome Cafe.
John opens the door for us as we exit the elevator and offers me a beer – a Red Stripe. He shows me pictures of his new girlfriend and we talk while watching parts of Oblivion with the volume too low to hear. Then his roommate John walks in to add to the conversation. When the movie ends we head up to the next floor where the sauna and outdoor pool are located. Even though the water is in the sun it calls me with its coolness to jump in, but I resist. As we leave we pass their water cooler and gym. I wouldn’t mind living here for a while. We also got to see their washer/dryer machine sitting between the toilet and tub.
We go home, instead of in the pool with Coleman who is already changed and putting on flip-flops. I will finish reading The Man in the Red Underpants while Caleb takes a nap. I leave the house at 5:30 to head to the beach near Alosra to watch the sunset. My closing the door wakes Caleb, who walks the dogs, and then runs to join me – with his water to celebrate Iftar. We start out on the rocks, then walk to the beach by the dried out boat, collect some shells, sit on the wall with the ants, stand for a while, and then head back to the sidewalk.
I had intended to go back to the rocks, but the sun was setting so quickly that we enjoyed taking some pictures through the trees. I drop my camera off in the house and we bring Garmin with us to see what its Bahrain map looks like. Caleb turns it off and tells me there are only about five roads on it, but I want to use it to map coördinates making it easier for me to get places while he is at work, on duty, or underway. Or I can plug my phone into the car and attempt to use the map at red lights and traffic jams adding to the excitement of the road.
We are driving to the BIECC (Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre) for the WooW (no idea what it stands for) Expo that has 90 booths selling abayas, jewelry, shoes, bags, coffee sets, make-up, and more abayas. I see a few things I might bother to try on and buy, but some booths are still setting up. Maybe we will come back later and see if we can’t get a good deal on a dress or two – they had some odd things – odd as in I’d love to wear them.
The event didn’t start till 7pm, giving people time for Iftar before shopping, and the place was getting busy as we were leaving. We are forced to go the wrong way down a one-way as it’s the only way out through the one side of the gate that invited head-on collisions from people turning to get in. We made it out and Caleb decided on I Am Thai for dinner on American Alley. We parked at the dirt lot and walked down the street where we were called to from guys on bikes with bags hanging from the handle bars offering sunglasses, watches, etc. It’s too hot here to sell those items from a coat like they do in the movies.
We order dinner downstairs – pad Thai and pineapple fried rice – both without the chicken or shrimp options. So the ladies ask, “100% veggie?” and I say yes and then quickly correct myself that they can use fish sauce, just no chunks. They ask about eggs and quickly get to making our order with two Thai teas as we head upstairs to the dining area – what a great use of space. We order a two-pepper spicy level out of three and the chilli oil was sweet along with the tray of four sauces we were given – soy sauce, soy concentrate, sweet chilli sauce, and a sweet/spicy sauce.
I give Caleb the water from my bottle so I can take the rest of the tea to go. We walk down the stairs and across the street are the Johns with a guy named Pitts. They’re out enjoying TCBY and are going back to the room to smoke cigarettes and cigars. We walk with them and once in the car I joke about how cool it would be if the guys first name was Armon, Arm for short – Arm Pitts. I think it would be hilarious, unless he smelled that way too.
On the way home I’m in the second turn lane and get cut off by a car so that he can make a u-turn – absolutely ridiculous, but I wonder out loud to Caleb how we can pretend to be surprised. We make it home a few minutes before 10pm without accident and take the dogs out. We are on our way back to the room when we see a guy in the distance with his large poodle-pit mix looking dog without a leash on. It would be different if the dog were under control, but he had to pull it out of the street, so we crossed over and took a short detour back to the room.
I had told Caleb earlier how I wanted to participate in Ramadan for at least a day and experience their feelings. I’ve tried fasting in the States before – whether for diet or religion, etc. I only last until late lunch before I have to eat something. I’ve tried just skipping breakfast or just having juice and Caleb knows I get cranky. He suggests that we start with the not eating and continue drinking water, but I assure him it won’t be on a day that we are out being busy, but it’s funny because that’s when we can’t drink in public so we volunteer ourselves up for fasting.
I finally cracked open the Quran, five days in to Ramadan, and read part of the introduction before Caleb’s tired face reminded me that it was 11:30pm. I let him know that even though my alarm will be going off at 5:15 he’s ok to sleep in because breakfast isn’t served until 7am and everything is on holiday hours on Friday, but I do want to get out of the house, so I can use the time in the morning to narrow down some of our options. And we’ve agreed to go easy because of the lack of food and water that will be available… when in Rome do as the Muslims do.