Thursday, March 27, 2008

Driving

As I mentioned in the previous post, Jonathan and I made a trip to Athens a couple of weeks ago.

This was Ali's riding style:



We got caught in a wild downpour and hail storm, but this is also what we got to drive through. Amazing.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Ali's New Eating Habits

Until last weekend, Ali had not even tasted a morsel of "people food." He was strictly Science Diet twice a day, with an occasional treat if he actually obeyed our commands.

Everything changed when we took him to our friends' house in Athens and they were, perhaps, not quite as good about cleaning up their floor. Ali spent the first hour licking every square inch of the linoleum, and then wandered back for another cleaning every couple of hours after that. Not only that, but he also had his first taste of canned dog food. Due to some wild storms and tornadoes, Jonathan and I ended up staying an extra night. Having not brought enough food for dinner that night, we had no choice but to feed him 2 cans of Fillet Mignon $.67 dog food. He was in doggy heaven to say the least.

When we returned to Atlanta, everything went back to normal, except that Jonathan and I had the idea that maybe Ali could manage spending the day by himself in the apartment outside of the crate. (It pained us to lock him up every time we left.) The first few days went well. Minus Ali's wailing (I kid you not--he wails) at passing by dogs, there were no problems. He has his own chair, a bone, a rope toy, and a stuffed animal we labeled his "best friend" to keep him company.

Then, it all started going downhill. Wednesday I returned home to find his best friend's (an orange tiger to replace the sheep he dismembered the week before) insides scattered across the floor in front of his chair with his eyes and nose no where to be found. I removed the rest of his stuffing while Ali watched inquisitively. Two hours later, his best friend's insides were again scattered all across the floor, and this time, the tiger's face had completely disappeared as well. I figured I'd let Ali destroy this one, and not replace it--we can't really afford new best friends every few days.

Thursday, Jonathan and I were in the other room and suddenly we both realized Ali had been surprisingly quiet. We went out into the main room to find 3 of our shoes piled up in front of Ali's chair, Ali happily munching away at the back of my leather shoe. He got in trouble, and I duct-taped my shoe back together.

Not being ones to learn lessons quickly, we "dog-proofed" the house last night and set out for trivia. We came home to a bright orange mess on the floor. As we looked closer, we discovered the traces of the mango Jonathan left zipped up in his backpack. All that was left of it was a portion of the pit. We can only assume all of the skin, flesh, and most of the pit are now passing through Ali's digestive system.

This morning we finally learned our lesson. After being gone only a few hours we returned home. Our mouths dropped open, and Ali cowered when he realized what kind of trouble he was going to get into. The entire contents of Jonathan's backpack had been scattered across the house--including his books, papers, and even his laptop. Ali was sitting in a pile of shredded bamboo (my laptop bag from Thailand), a library book missing the corner and the plastic, the remnants of a Tupperware container (forgotten food in J's bag again), and had polished off at least 1/4C. of spicy salsa, not forgetting to splash it on the wall as well.

All that said, Ali got in trouble and spent awhile in timeout while Jonathan and I vowed to send him back to the crate for good (or until we forget how frustrating it was for him to ruin our things).

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Misr, Omm al Donya (Egypt, mother of the earth)

Today I was enjoying lunch in my car in the Kroger parking lot waiting for one of my clients to come to work when suddenly, a white cat aimlessly wandered in front of my car and through the parking lot. Next thing I knew, I was taken back to Cairo and the millions (I'm convinced there are at least 10 million) cats wandering the streets. In the gutter, on the road, in our apartment building, and there isn't a dumpster in the entire city without at least one rag-tag gang of cats scrounging a meal out of it.

(I found this one in Alexandria)


And of course, there was always Amir. I can't remember if I already posted this or not, but Amir was adopted with another cat by an American family in Cairo. Here's the most recent picture of him. He looks as though he's finally grown into his ears.

Amir in his so-ugly-it's-almost-cute phase.

And finally, in honor of my Egyptian nostalgia, I figured I'd post some enjoyable pictures, all of which were practically daily occurrences for me.

Say it out loud, and those are the exact words I heard at least 10 times a day.


This wall says "it's forbidden to throw garbage here"


Looking for a ride?

Just so we're clear.


You've got to have your priorities.
The Arabic is transliterated from English to say "salon smart man"


One time we saw a bus that said "English Languish School."
Keeping the streets safe.

Friday, March 14, 2008

A day in the life...

What I've been up to, aside from work of course!


Key Lime Pie from scratch (of course)


Ali can now sit, shake, stay, lay down, and come (if there's not something more exciting). Though he still wails when he's outside and sees another dog, to our embarassment.


I was officially re-certified in CPR.


My biggest triumph was my first latte--art and all. And let me tell you, making lattes is WAY harder than it sounds. Jonathan is a spectacular teacher.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Good and the...er...different

Bonus: a KitchenAid mixer. I originally took it off the registry because I didn't feel I could justify owning it, but after a long talk with my mom about it, she convinced me that it's worth it. She also assured me that, in case we moved overseas, she would happily "borrow" it until we returned. Plus, I felt like a major bargain shopper. I got it for $130 off, and used only gift cards for it.


On another note, one emissions test and two visits to the tag office later, the good ole' Camry is now an official GA resident. This means 4 things for me:
1. I am not nearly as cool driving around with a GA license plate as I was with a CO plate.
2. I can no longer expect that people assume I just don't know where I'm going when I'm flipping u-turns and cutting into turning lanes at the last second.
3. I will now devote a lot more time to finding my car in parking lots. (Good thing it's still sporting a certain presidential candidates bumper sticker on the back so I can find it a bit faster!)

4. I am officially Georgian--minus the accent and passion for Waffle House, Chick fil-a (though I just discovered they have spectacular chicken biscuits), and Cracker Barrel. That's kind of a big deal.