Friday, May 20, 2005

trying to keep ones head

No power this morning, which meant no water because we get that via an electric pump. It being The Day of Rest, I went into the garden with my latest shisha pipe, book, mug of tea and mp3 player. I’m breaking in this new pipe – it’s brass, (all my others have been chrome); and I’m trying out mint tobacco, which is cool, literally.

All was well for two or three minutes. But my new sandals have skinned both of my big toe joints, and the local flies and ants were delighted with the prospect of unhealed wounds; soon several insects were stuck to the open flesh. Tried to ignore them, because the blue sky through the foliage was beautiful, and the acacia is budding with lovely red blossoms.

Nobody in the house knows the Arabic for ‘sticking plaster’. So that’s me hobbling to the pharmacy for a humiliating mime session. God only knows what I’ll come out with. Libyan pharmacies have drugs costing a few pennies which would get you several years behind bars back in Blighty.

I think that my honeymoon period in Zawiyah is coming to an end: on the way to the internet cafe just now, a beardy-weirdy in a parked car was staring at me with the most intense hatred - I felt the fucker measuring my neck for the sword.