Today is not a very good day. Yep, after 11 sweet days off, we were back to work. And the harshness of life over here came crashing down on me... at about 3:30am. That's when Kaiya decided she wanted to be awake. While she was very sweet, talking with me and cuddling me, and telling me she loved me, she did not fall asleep again till about 5. I tried to sleep beside her, but I was stressed, mulling over the pros and cons of life here, and worrying about my first drive in to work (my first drive in to work!!!!! I've joined the crazies on the road now!!!)
5:30 came quickly, and I got up, gritting my teeth and telling myself over and over, "You can do this. It's just one day." And I did it. (And rocked the roundabouts, I gotta say...) But it was stressful. The early mornings, the rush into traffic and to daycare... they are always stressful. And I get to missing home and what we left... and I'm not going to say anymore. Because I have in fact been up since 3:30 this morning, and I've promised to give life here a year before evaluating it too much, 'cause God knows we would have booted out of Canada if we had not committed to that first year, and I risk becoming an overly sentimental pile of mush if I don't stop right now.
Anyone else notice my overuse of italics when I'm tired?
So what I really wanted to share with you was more of last week. Because it was such a sweet week, and a wonderful reprieve from what is kind of a hectic life here. Yes, we had a few major day trips. But we also took the time to explore some of Doha's wonderful parks (and to go back to the Intercontinental). I've said it before, and I'll say it again: having a 3-year old changes things. In the past, we would have been quick to get the heck out of the country for a holiday, but this past week we were quite content to take our time settling in, exploring Doha, and making new friends. I'm so glad we did.
Here's more pictures of the fun:
Seriously, is this not a postcard? This is either Al Bidda or Al Rumaila Park. I'm not quite sure. But it has very much of an "in the middle of the city" feel. I loved it. It was huge, with many different parts... playgrounds, shaded spots, shops... I absolutely loved the view of the West Bay and the Corniche.
|Kaiya and I lounging in the park, finishing off our bag of popcorn.|
One of the daycare moms very kindly organized a playdate at Dahl Al Hammam Park, our favourite park. It's the best, because it's HUGE, with an amazing amount of greenspace, and a fantastic playground (and a fenced-off cave that I think we Epps need to look into). It attracts expats and Qataris alike, and it's super close to our house, and on the way home from Kaiya's daycare.
Anyhow, Dia's mom organized a little Eid get-together, saying it would be a good chance for the parents to meet and "break the ice" and for the kids to play together. Only four families ended up showing up, but it was a treat to see these girls play together. I love watching Kaiya make little 3-year old friends.
|They tossed around and chased this ball for a bit...|
|...until they realized it would be much more fun to tackle Dia's mom.|
|The group of us at the park. This was the day I got downright cold once the sun set!|
And finally, we spent another day at the Intercontinental Hotel. We went with Kylee (our daycare/trick-or-treating friend) and Katie. These girls had so much fun together! It really warmed my mama heart to see these friendships forming.
|One of my favourite pictures right now. It's on our fridge.|
|Katie had to go, but Kylee and Kaiya just kept on playing.|
|I could eat these two right up!!|
|And then the two adventurous girls went kayaking on their own. HA. Kylee's dad is there with them, promise!|
Four weeks and four days till we're home for Christmas!! Four weeks and four days! (oops, there go those italics again.)
We are settling in, bit by bit, but we are SO excited to see family and friends over the holidays again.
Love to you all. It's to bed I now go.