The Life, Times & Musings of an American Midwest Woman Who Lives in the Middle East

Rabina

Rabina

By on Sep 23, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

I really do enjoy the discipline of writing, but some days…er, weeks my pen goes silent. I struggle to put in words all that we are experiencing and feeling. So I wait and the blog sits idle. For that, I apologize. We’re friends and friends want to stay involved in each other’s lives. So today I gave myself the ultimatum, “B.I.C., Pam!” (Behind In Chair, Pam!)
 
In other words, I’m not to get up until I’ve penned something and actually posted it. Ironically, I have just now noticed that we do not have internet right now. That makes me chuckle. Maybe it will return by the time I finish this entry, but most likely it won’t. Life is like that a lot here in Upper Egypt (which remember is actually Southern Egypt).  Starting…stopping….waiting…adjusting.
 
I’ve made a joke that to live abroad you must pack your “flexible pants.” I’m now upgrading that to a “flexible wardrobe.” Every day I have to roll with life here trying to sense what God is leading me to do. I still have scores of lists and a beautiful color-coded calendar, but I have to release all that into His hands and be willing to do “the better thing” which often appears spontaneously.
 
So thanks for hanging in there with me. I’m grateful for your friendship. Feel free to send me a note about your daily happenings. I really do want to know. You can reach me via FB or website www.pamelajmorton.com.
 
I’ll leave you with a story from my Nubian friend, Rabina.* Rabina is 86 years old and has a better goatee than most of my male friends. She’s small, stooped and infirmed but has some serious spunk remaining. Every day as I leave the village to walk into town, I will go to where she sits under a tree and greet her. She pulls me in to plant a kiss on each cheek, calls me “Bam” and asks about my two girls. 
 
“How’s MiMi (Emileigh)?” she asks. 
 
“She is doing well,” I reply.
 
“Is she good to her husband?”
 
“Yes,” nodding my head.
 
“It is a good marriage?” she continues.
 
“Yes, they are very happy.” I report.
 
“How’s Aya (Aria)?” she asks.
 
“She’s doing very well. She enjoys school and traveling.”
 
“Traveling? Is she coming here?”
 
“No, she’s in school right now.”
 
“She should come!” she said rather emphatically.
 
“Yes, we love to see our children,” I said.
 
“Well, MY children run off to town and leave me here,” she grunted.
 
I took a moment and looked around. There were two of her daughters sitting nearby. I wondered what she was talking about.
 
“I need some medicine. I have a headache!”
 
“Oh, I don’t have any medicine. I’m a teacher, not a nurse remember? But I am happy to pray for you.”
 
She looked at me and said, “My children ran off to town!”
 
Just then one of her daughters came over and said, “We went to town yesterday to get medicine for her headache. She’s still mad at us because we couldn’t sit with her AND get her medicine at the same time.”
 
“Ah,” I nodded. I understood a bit better now. Rabina gets confused now and then about time. This makes it all the more interesting when I’m trying to understand all of the conversation in Arabic while hearing verbs in past, present and future.
 
Just then, Rabina straightens her back, smiles her biggest 2-toothed smile and says, “Hi! My name is Rabina! Do you live around here?”
 
Another chance to practice my Arabic conversation.
 
“Yes, I do. So nice to meet you, Rabina. My name is Bam.”
 
_____________________________________________________
 
*Not her real name.

Pamela J. Morton

An author, speaker, teacher trainer and self-proclaimed "professional luncher," Pam wants to share laughter, life and hope with her dear Arab neighbors while providing insight into Middle Eastern/African customs and everyday life with her friends in the West.

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