Monday, October 13, 2008

We’re busy doing nothing working the whole day through, trying to find lots of things not to do…..

Before you start reading I have been playing around with links to google maps so click on the links to see the places I have been writing about.

It’s been a weird few weeks and I don’t know what started it but of late we have been exceedingly pro active. Maybe it’s a result of the change in work and school, but it has begun and long may it last.
A ‘life laundry’ was the first exercise, going through the house and getting rid of the junk that somehow we all seem to accumulate. This has now been completed, with the exception of the kitchen and laundry room and, boy does it feel good.
We have gathered together all the baby bits and bobs that are no longer required and have taken photos ready for Becky to do an advert for the Al Fair notice board. However, as this has been on the cards for some weeks, I suspect that I will need to sort that one out.

The notice boards are a great source for those wanting to buy and sell and always attract a lot of attention. However, you have to pick your words carefully or you will have a lot of unwanted callers.
When I advertised that I was selling the hard top to my jeep, all I got was phone calls asking how much I wanted to sell the Jeep for. I unfortunately had a bit of a paddy down the phone to an English caller, as he had no excuse for misreading the notice! Given that the photo only showed the hardtop I was flabbergasted (Good word that!) that so many people could not understand what the advert was for. A friend had exactly the same experience with a set of fender flares, so I know I am not alone.
If you want a new housemaid, second hand car, or the entire contents of a departing expatriates house look no further than the Al fair notice boards, particularly good ones at MQ and Al Sarooj, also an alternative one at the Sultan Centre.
There is another source still in it’s fledgling days and that is , I occasionally have a quick look and can’t say if it actually works, but hats off to whoever set this up I hope it works out for them.

So on with the jobs… Becky has planted a couple of trees, one for out by the cars and the other was to be in the ground out by the front of the house. However, I pointed out that the septic tank was there i.e. there is only concrete under the paving, so it has been planted in a very big and heavy pot instead.

We now have a couple of sun loungers and an umbrella on the first floor balcony so that guests, not that we have had that many of late, can relax in their own space.
Jacob has started earning pocket money, with jobs such as making his bed every morning and tidying up his playroom at the end of the day. Money is a great motivator especially when Ben 10 toys are available at the local department store.

Jacob joined in with the clearing out of the old in his own special way, by smashing a table lamp whilst pummeling me with a cushion during a play fight. He was mortified!!! Given that he is rapidly approaching six years old he has broken surprisingly little however I feel the reverse will be true of young Oscar. This accidental damage gave Becky the excuse of buying new lamps for the livingroom. A hunt round Muscat did not inspire either of us (especially when ID Design have prices in excess of RO150 per lamp, and their not even nice) So it was with some surprise that I returned home from work the other night to find that Gael had come to the rescue with a set of lamps from her new interiors shop called Gekco just off Way 3205 in North Ghubra. (It shares the ground floor of Medan Suites Hotel building with the restaurant Thai Basil).
Gael has hopefully tapped into a niche in the market offering Indonesian and modern furniture and interior bits in a town sorely lacking such up to now. Now before you start questioning my sanity, yes I am a man and as such I in no way advocate the purchase of interior bits, instead a table and chairs, bed and packing case to sit on whilst watching the tv is more than enough for any household, Grrrr and other manly noises just to prove my credentials.

Enough with fluffy cushions and back to more important issues… Tyres (or tires for our American readers). We went off to the desert with friends this weekend to stay at a desert camp and went down to Wahiba in two cars, Becky and Oscar in the Explorer and Jacob and I in the Jeep. This wasn’t due to an argument, but down to me wanting to do a lot of dune driving, (the opposite being true of Becky), and Becky not wanting to be crammed in to a small jeep for the couple of hours drive to the camp. We had a lovely time at the camp, Oscar made it his purpose in life to eat as much sand as possible, and the following day we re-inflated the car tyres and headed back to Muscat. After about forty minutes of driving we stopped at a petrol station to fill up and I went to put some more air in the Explorers tyres as the warning light was still on. I was somewhat confused as the more air I put in the less pressure showed on the gauge, Oh… a puncture. Another forty minutes followed as I changed the wheel in 38 degree heat, although it must be said quite a lot of that was spent trying to get the jack out of the car! As the rest of the tyres were nearing the end, we chose to change them all so that turned out to be a rather expensive end to a lovely weekend.

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