I've been in Aleppo for a week again. Highlights:
1. Max's birthday party. Ahmed managed to suddenly produce a chocolate cake for Max in the middle of the night, and once again a good time was had by all. Too good a time by me, Absolut Vodka and Ton do not go well together.
2. Next morning, woken bij Nicole standing in the doorway (after banging on the door did not work) as I had a trip planned with some others in the hotel. Grabbed my camera, popped two aspirins and struggled down the stairs. Tried to sleep of my hangover a bit in the back of the van as we as we headed of to San Simeon and the dead cities. Mr Simeon may have been into austerity and praying and such, but you ain't telling me he chose such a beautifull spot to sit on a pillar without once stopping praying to admire the view. The Dead Cities, nice, kinda dead. Same as me most of the morning.
3. Doing f*** all most of the week, just relaxing and drinking on the roof of the hotel
4. Going shopping for breakfast for 30 Lebanese guests at 2 a.m.
with Ahmed, and going to Rani's hotel to borrow furniture afterwards. I was supposed to sleep on the roof that night, but it had rained. A lot... So I slept in the lobby for a couple of hours till the Lebanese woke up, and moving to Abdul's (one of the boys working in the hotel) bed. Typical Arab teenager thing, the wall next to me was coverred in Arab female movie star posters. Room smelled ditto...
5. Getting my little fuel tank fixed. I needed to get a seam rewelded, and a piece removed so there was a bit more space. I took Miliana along for Arab translation, but it turned out not to be necesary. The first place we saw someone welding was a radiator constructio/repairt shop run by an Armenian guy who spoke English very wel. He explained that weliding the tank was not a problem, but cutting the bottom at an angle and putting in a piece of aluminium was, because the could not get a piece of aluminium... He asked how much extra space was needed so the tank would not rub against the chain guard anymore. As I said a few centimetres would be enough,
he deduced that a big hammer would do the trick, pulled it out of his desk drawer and pounded away at the offending spot till I did indeed have a few centimetres extra space there (and no more bottom in the tank. "Now we weld" were his prophetic words, and weld they did. Fixed the whole thing in no-time, pressure tested the tank and refused any payment. I love the Arab Way: doesn't matter how or how it will look, we WILL get it done.
6. Getting 'oud' lessons from Bashar, a patient but strict teacher :-) I can play a whole song on the oud now! (more or less)
7. Brilliant farewell dinner at Majid's. Took Max along, large part of the familly and some friends were there as well. Majid had gone all out, brilliant food and a lot of fun watching the guys dance to Abba.
That's it, in a nutshell.
Tot: 3.191s; Tpl: 0.056s; cc: 12; qc: 50; dbt: 0.0709s; 3; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 3;
; mem: 1.4mb