Friday, 7 December 2012

Write On!

I’ve always wondered how writers begin the writing process. Is it ideas scribbled in a notebook, a mind map of post-its all over a wall? Is it staring at a computer screen, fingers hovering over the keyboard? Perhaps it’s something else entirely? I’m a writer of a different sort. Literary essays were my forte. Now, my strength is writing brilliant lesson plans and helpful comments in margins of exams that feel more like mini rants: “Simple sentences do not consist of a dependent and independent clause joined together by a subordinating conjunction” *sigh* Not poetry or great literature by any means. Then again, this blog isn’t anything to write home about either, hahaha! Get it??? No, Mik. No one gets it. No one gets why you refer to yourself in the third person, or why you write home about this stuff. I guess I just always thought I might have an inner writing goddess…No, not an inner blogger goddess, but an actual novelist. Of course, not all dreams are meant to come true. That’s the thing about being thirty (years old), you realize that you CAN’T actually be whatever you want to be.

What role does Kuwait play in all this nonsense? Well, I thought that I might have time while I’m here to jot some notes down and try to turn them into something brilliant. However, I haven’t even scribbled anything of my own down-just terrible. Perhaps I need to be in a country where literature is valued. Let’s face it, it’s not like there are publishing houses here that would be willing to give me a big fat book advancement. People aren’t avid readers here. Maybe I could write something brilliant here and sent it out once I return to Canada...

The Irish chef, my Polish flatmate and I are all avid readers. I admit that I haven’t been able to get into Hullaballo and actually returned it to the Irish chef. I need a page-turner! This morning my Polish flatmate, the Irish chef and I went to The Breakfast Club for brunch. I tried the risotto and the Irish chef had the American breakfast. My Polish flatmate opted for the sweet crepe. I had to take pictures because it was ALL delicious; unfortunately, the Irish chef's food came out before ours and I forgot to take a picture of his food.

 This place really is a gem! My mushroom risotto. YUMMY!!!
My Polish flatmate's sweet crepe complete with maple syrup AND nutella. Nutella is EVERYWHERE in Kuwait.

After eating we hopped in a taxi and headed on over to Salmiya. One of our co-workers was selling her jewellery at an annual bazaar at a theatre. While the Irish chef went to scope out a second-hand bookstore, my Polish flatmate and I stood in a looooooooooooong line waiting to enter the bazaar. I was absolutely shocked to see a loooooooooooooooong line of expats. There were some Middle Eastern families there as well, but the group consisted of mostly expats. I stood in line while my flatmate quickly took a peak inside. As she approached me she shook her head "no" and that was enough for us to get out of line and head over to Marina Mall for coffee and some shopping. First, however, we soaked up as much glorious sun as we could! I went out in a long-sleeved shirt, jeans and flip-flops and I felt warm!!! While we walked along the coast with our coffee, I snapped a few shots of the water and the greenery so you can see that there is SOME green here, lol! We saw people jogging, cycling, rollerblading, couples (Middle Eastern) holding hands and strolling leisurely, kids actually being very active, and for the first time in two weeks I realized how I much I miss being in a culture that recognizes the importance of being active and getting fresh air. You don’t get the sense that Kuwaitis prioritize being active or getting fresh air, so it was nice to see expats and Kuwaitis (as well as other Arabs), all out and about outside today!

After we finished our coffees (my third of the day), we made our way to Marina Mall. I am never eager to go to malls here because the men so openly and obviously stare at women. As we entered the mall we passed several coffee shops full of Arab men who openly and obviously stared at us. At least I thought it was both of us. Getting stared at is common. No, I'm not drop-dead gorgeous. I'm half Asian and I LOOK Asian. I have learned to focus on the point I am walking towards and ignore any man in my peripheral vision. If I don't do this, I will actually get flustered. My flatmate, on the other hand, isn’t a fan of pretending that nothing’s wrong and heatedly asked me, “What is it with the men here?!? Why are they so interested in Asians???” I looked blankly at her. What was I supposed to say? I got uncomfortable and shook my head. People who know my history with Arab men would likely assume that I know the answer to my flatmate’s question, but I have absolutely NO IDEA why Middle Eastern men like Asian women. Instead of asking the Arab men (wouldn't that have been hilarious???), we kept walking in search of Christmas presents. Although we tried to find presents, instead we picked up face cream for the Irish chef, who was too embarrassed to get some himself. I couldn’t buy anything because my flatmate IS my secret Santa. My flatmate decided to return home after searching, and not finding, the perfect gift for her secret Santa. I saw her off and then went to meet the Irish chef who’d finished up at the bookstore. He and I went to the grocery store and stared at all the goodies. I LOVE shopping for food in Salmiya! I found Japanese curry!!! I was sooo excited! I also found some baking ingredients that I needed to make cookies! Let the baking begin!!!

 The shoreline. I don't know what that glass pyramid is, but the building behind it is the Hard Rock Cafe.
 Another building...I don't know what it houses...Uh, yeah.
 The coastline: Kuwait city. If you look close enough, on the right-hand side you can see the Kuwait towers.
 Some greenery and and a kid rollerblading. The little girl and her brothers were so cute trying to skate everywhere! A few falls didn't curb their enthusiasm and determination either! 
The view from the restaurants overlooking the marina. All of the restaurants were PACKED! It was crazy to see so many different nationalities all squished into one building. It made me feel happy. Yes, that's ALL it takes...Well, FOOD and feeling close to people are all it takes.

I know this has NOTHING to do with Kuwait, but it's my Uncle Jeff's birthday today (December 7th)! I love my Uncle Jeff so much. He's an intelligent and hilarious guy who got me hooked on red wine! I always wanted to find a guy just like my dad and my Uncle Jeff...I still do. Happy birthday, Uncle Jeff!


  1. The breakfast place looks so good! And the waterfront is gorgeous!

    A book about your life in Kuwait would be really interesting, especially for people in Europe/North America. There are some publishing houses in Qatar and the UAE that you could try. There was one in Doha who was actually advertising for people to send in manuscripts, but I forgot their name. It started with a B, that's all I remember.

    Have a great rest of the weekend! Your post inspired me to go to the Corniche (waterfront) here :-)

  2. Dear Gabek: Thanks for the message! The breakfast place IS good!!!

    Much appreciation for the feedback about publishing houses in the ME. I don't know if I'm brave enough to attempt writing a novel...I think it WOULD be interesting if someone who'd been living in the ME for a few years wrote something aimed at a European/NA audience though!

    I'm glad you were inspired to go to the waterfront, too! I think being outside here is one of the things that makes me really happy!

    Take care and I hope your week goes smashingly well!!!