Monday, July 16, 2007

moving back to my old blog :)

Friday, May 04, 2007

Well, it's been awhile since my last post. I'm no longer adjusting to living in Amman :) now i'm adjusting to the idea of leaving it. I can't believe how fast my Fulbright has gone! I guess I've done much of what I came here to do, I'm certainly more relaxed. I've had a lovely week of lunches and coffees and dinners on terraces, plenty of sunsets to appreciate, Friday morning brunch in my garden, and plenty of visitors and trips.

My research finally got off the ground in March and I've been doing surveys at the Women and Childrens Health Centers in the Refugee Camp. I'm single once more except for a brief "hiccup" in Turkey :) and oh yeah...had Da Cheong and Ariane visit me and we had a crazy old time between meeting bedouins in Wadi Rum and learning how to make Turkish Coffee in Madaba and sorting out pants by the Dead Sea. Good times... :) In two weeks Greg arrives and we head back out to Petra, Wadi Rum, and even Jerusalem this time.

Just came back from a trip to Turkey and Bulgaria, got to see Dancho and Gala. A nice reprieve from getting harassed in the streets. :) and i got to eat Pork!! its been too long.

Anyways more new photos posted :) Check them out at this Link

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Happy chinese new year :) Had a lovely dinner last night, made chinese food and dumplings for 30 dear friends here in Jordan. I'll post more photos later, the cooking was insane, but the evening was a blast. We topped off the night with Lilie's beautiful dessert: fried banana mango spring rolls dipped in melted nutella...YUM.

I've also posted some photos of our cooking lessons (been giving roland some basic asian cooking's been a blast) for you curious folk you can see some of our creations on my flickr site

Monday, February 12, 2007


It's February!! :) who knew time could fly by so fast. It's been a blur these last few months living here. I had my reality check yesterday when I went to the medical bookstore to buy some books for my upcoming sub-internships and my psychiatry rotation. Just a few more months and I'll be back in Ohio on the wards and Jordan will be a distant dream or somewhat fuzzy blurred memory. It's been a good trip so far, not totally what i had expected when i chose to accept this grant but I'm happy nonetheless about where i'm sitting at this point. I'm at the moment planning some health education classes at the community center- talks on nutrition, diabetes, and high blood pressure. I'm realizing just how much I enjoy doing health education and prevention topics, perhaps the family med/prev med route isn't such a bad idea for me afterall. the paths that life takes sometimes suprises me, but i suppose it keeps things interesting :)

Friday, January 26, 2007

New Year and Christmas have come and gone. Spent the Christmas break in Palestine :) FUN but very cold, who'd have thought we'd get snow in jerusalem! Quite a sight I must say seeing that ancient city coated in white. Now back in Jordan seeking a routine between arabic classes and trying (STILL) to get my research off the ground and running. My time here is half-up and i can hardly believe it. I dont want to think about leaving yet but there it school looming in the horizon once aid paperwork, electives to sign up for, step 2 cs, and the prospect of choosing residency programs *sigh* In the meantime I'm relishing all my free ability to do absolutely nothing on a friday morning, the lazy walks in the park and evenings in with roland, and the time to throw lots of dinner parties for friends here. I still have time i suppose, hopefully a few more trips planned, india, turkey and bulgaria. we shall see...

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Qasid term is over and I'm now on a bit of a Christmas Break. It's been a rough few weeks, but the last week has been fantastic! After our finals/graduation ceremony we went to Fuhais, this small Christian town outside Amman. It's really strange to be in a Muslim country for Christmas, there's almost no signs of it as you walk around the street. No Christmas songs, no trees, no lights, no red and green decor. So we retreated to fuhais where the houses were strung with colorful lights, the town had a large Christmas Tree at its center and we even found a shop selling little lit up plastic santas. We ate at a small restaurant known for its fatteh, (yum) followed by a narguila session with arak in its vase instead of water. PHOTOS HERE.

The following day I headed up to Damascus with Lillie. We walked/shopped around Old Damascus, saw the Ummawi Mosque and one of hte oldest still operating covered souq's in the world. The city was charming, beautiful architecture, small streets and old houses, and so much green. We ate at Beit Jabrii in the old part of town and even got to watch what looked like some sort of food show taking place. Old guy in a hat raving about the dishes in front of the camera. I bought some gifts and an adorable little sheesha :P We wandered around the city for some time, got lost a few times, took a bus and ended up in who knows where LOL all in all a great time. We took the service car back to Amman the same evening and ended up with this older muslim woman from Salt who spent the whole time muttering to herself and asking us to repeat after her, all i could catch was something about the sky above nad the earth below, LOL. At the Syrian Border our driver went to buy a bunch of duty free cigarettes which she proceeded to hide from him by stuffing them one by one down her chilbab (full black robes they use over their clothing). :) otherwise uneventful border crossing. SYRIA PHOTOS

Saturday-Monday, Lil, Amanda, and I took our little road trip. Amanda had won a free 3day car rental..unfortunately we all only had moderate knowledge regarding driving a stick shift :P it was an interesting drive to stay the least, esp getting through Amman's crazy driving scene. We headed up towards Madaba in the West and to the Ma'in Hot Springs. This place was amazing, one waterfall was sooo hot, about 65C we ended up in the slightly cooler one. It was so nice sitting in the warm springs and standing under the waterfall, it was like the highest waterpressure shower I could imagine :P MORE PHOTOS

The evening was spent in Madaba in a cute little motel with "the most comfortable beds in Jordan"
according to the Lonely Planet guide. THey were quite nice :P we slept well after our feast at Harout Jdoudna Restaurant.

Day 2 was spent driving out to the dead sea. Driving in these long winding paths down into the valley is awesome, although a bit frightening at times. Especially with the sheep crossing and the bedouin dogs trying to "herd" our car towards their sheep. We ended up at the public beach at the Dead Sea. It's the most hilariousexperience to float in that water, you're just so buoyant :P it's difficult to keep your feet down, they keep wanting to float up. :) good times.

Day 3 we drove back down to the jordan valley up the road by the border crossings. It was strange seeing Israel/the West bank just across the river. We stopped at Pella, wonderful ruins of the former decapolis cities of Rome along with several other layers of occupation. We ate St. Peter's fish...divine. A whole fried fish with lemon MM it's supposedly the same fish that Christ used to feed the multitudes. EIther way, it was fantastic fish. We ate lunch watching a couple bedouins grazing their large herd of sheep :P The pictures are quite entertaining. THen we drove north to Umm Qais another ruins site, large ottoman village (19th c) along with Roman ruins including 2 theaters. Its situated near the borders of Lebanon, Syria,Israel, and lots of checkpoints and lots of security. From the ruins we were able to see the Jordan River, the Sea of Galilee into the Golan Heights as well. We had just enough time to wander around the ruins and even catch a sunset before we headed south to Irbid to visit a Fulbrighter colleague on our way back to Amman. PHOTOS

Yesterday Was our Christmas Party, thrown together with 2 days of planning, but a smashing success :P. We had such a great time cooking lots of food, making eggnog, roasting chestnuts, exchanging some hilarious white elephant gifts which include a beanie hat with tufts of synthetic hair, ninja turtles uno (my contribution :P), and nunchucks. We even had a tree and some santa hats...PHOTOS here

to View all Photo Sets CLICK HERE

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

well it's been awhile since my last post. Things have picked up quite a bit since Ramadan ended and I seem to be insanely busy these days with everything EXCEPT my research :) Most exciting thing I'm trying to get launched is a project at the Community Center I volunteer at that will involve photography and focus groups with the women and children that live there. I want to hold some discussions with the kids about gender roles in their community and maybe teach them a little photography, a colleague of mine will be speaking to the women. So lots of work there in terms of more grant writing and pitching the proposal to various organizations in the area. I've also started volunteering at the Red Crescent hospital under the head nurse who's from Iraq. He's had some amazing experiences and it'll give me a great chance to keep up some medical skills as well as work on my spoken Arabic as I follow patients. The docs will be rounding with me in English on the 20 or so patients there. So, it's been fun, lots of Arabic classes still and I'm still teaching English to young kids at the community center. I'm so behind on my work!! Anyways, hope all is well in your worlds....take care...Abi