Wacky Mommy has tagged me for a meme. I’m supposed to come up with 10 things that either my family or my dog don’t know about me.

Ok, the dog is too easy. He’s only known me since January, and he was only a tiny baby then. There’s lots he doesn’t know about me, including the fact that I’m serious when I tell him to stop digging in the potted plants, and that I WILL WIN the battle of the wills.

And my family?

Ilsa is re-reading the Series of Unfortunate Events, and she said to me the other night, “It says here that all parents have secrets from their children, but I don’t think that’s true. I mean, I could imagine it. It makes sense that you wouldn’t tell your daughter everything. But I still don’t think it’s true.” So what do you think? Do you tell your kids everything?  I think there’s a lot about me she doesn’t know; and a fair amount I hope she never finds out.

However, by family do you include Donn? I’ve known him for ½ of my life now, and there’s not a lot he doesn’t know. He knows how I really feel about Bob Dylan, and how I really feel about sharing my coffee (don’t touch my coffee. Seriously. Just move away). He knows the order in which I like to eat apples and the order I read the comics in, when I have comics to read that is. He knows I HATE it when he uses my towel, which happens to hang next to the sink. He knows NOT to ask for a bite of my hamburger or LU biscuit (the le petit ecolier kind) because I eat around the edges and I don’t like to share the best part, the middle, which I have been saving for myself. The whole family knows I don’t like to drink cold drinks from mugs which are intended for hot drinks; I also don’t like to drink hot drinks in glass mugs. I drink my tea from china cups. I’m expressive; emotive. I don’t hide things. (I also—is this just me?—sound a little neurotic here, when really I’m easy-going and fun-loving) My family knows that I am always reading something, especially in the car, and that I hate it when they (they being the Evil Satanic World Government) make movies out of my favorite books, so much so that sometimes I actually forbid my children from watching the movie, (how uptight is this woman, you ask yourself) because  I feel it will spoil the book for them. My poor children and yes, I am accepting contributions for future therapy. So this meme could be tough.

Then I came up with the perfect variation. How about 10 Things I Like about Hot Dusty Days? I started this blog entry last Friday, which was the 4th day of the sandstorm and triple-digit heat. Thankfully, that night the wind shifted, and the skies cleared. But the heat has remained. It’s 106 to 113 most days, the heat and light like heavy golden bars crashing on your head when you step outside. In the evenings, it cools down and the stars are brilliant. We hide inside as much as we can, and fight about whose turn it is to run to the store for an item we will try to live without at least until evening, like toilet paper or milk. If possible, we send the children, whining, out into the heat, to buy a block of frozen butter at a store ½ a block away and have it melting by the time they run back inside with it. (I’m KIDDING about sending my kids out into the heat and squabbling with my husband of course! At least, I want to go on record as KIDDING).

At the beach on Saturday, the sand was so hot that even though I was wearing flip-flops, it filtered in and burned the sides of my feet. The birds were lethargic with heat; they flew low, sometimes under the cars looking for shade, and one landed, briefly, on the top of Abel’s head as he bobbed on an innertube in the water. We finally got the tent set up (it took approximately forever) and I rushed into the cool, green water, and after that my outlook miraculously changed and I had a super-wonderful-fantastic day at the beach! Did I mention it was great?

This morning, after all the thesis students finally went away, I decided to take a nice, refreshing shower. It was around noon. I turned on the cold water, but the water that emerged (from pipes laid close to the ground outside) was hot. At least we save money on heating water!

Without further ado, then, 10 Things I Like About the Hot Season in Mauritania:

1.      Umm….

2.      I’m THINKING!

3.      I like that my house has windows that actually close.

4.      I like that my bedroom has AC so I can sleep.

5.      umm….

6.      I like that sandstorms can’t technically last forever.

7.      They HAVE to end sometime, right?

8.      I like that it got hot so late this year. Usually we start these hot days in March or April. It’s already mid-May.

9.      It is also mango season. That’s worth a lot of heat and dust.

10.   And my absolute favorite thing about this hot season? It’s my last one. We’re shaking the dust off our feet (literally, not figuratively) and moving on. This is the end of our time in Mauritania. It’s not going to cool down till October, but that’s ok—we’re leaving the end of July.

 

So we’re still here for a while, but it’s amazing how much my attitude is helped by the realization that this is my last hot season. I don’t deal well with the heat. It tends to bring out the worst in me—and that’s something that my family and my dog already know, unfortunately.

Why the move? Well, see above. There are other reasons, too, but I won’t go into them now.

Where to next? Wait and see… more info will be revealed

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