Tuesday, September 23, 2008


One thing I have learned from our many moves is that I won’t be happy or content until I have made our apartment a home. There is something about hanging your own art on the wall, putting your clothes in the drawers where they belong, and arranging bookshelves just so that makes life in a new place easier to bear. Although we are still one shipment short of a real home, the process that Adelpha calls “nesting” has definitely begun.

Since we arrived more than a month ago now, I have been negligent about even simple things like deciding exactly which drawer t-shirts should be placed and how best to organize our sorry excuse for a kitchen. When our air shipment arrived last week, it was the final push I needed to remember that Cairo wasn’t just another hotel – it was our new home.

Due to the horrific condition our clothes arrived in, every single article of clothing had to be laundered including suits that were still in their plastic dry cleaner bags. Thankfully, I have a wonderful husband who spent numerous hours cycling our dusty clothes through the washing machine and hanging them on our drying rack. With his help, I spent most of the weekend putting things away, organizing, discussing where things should be put away, and folding mountains of laundry.

The biggest step toward feeling more at home has been underway for a few weeks now. Some of you may remember what our flat looked like when we arrived in August. Thanks to some artful pouting and polite complaining, the Housing Department took pity on us and sent over some slightly less hideous couches for our living room. When we were asked what we thought of our new seating, we diplomatically said that they were “a huge improvement.”

Sure, the new sofas weren’t ideal but I didn’t lie when I said we liked them more than our old ones. The pattern is less jarring to the eye and they’re high enough that adults can sit comfortably. I would call that an upgrade any day of the week.

In even better news, our new curtains were installed yesterday and to call them a simple upgrade doesn’t do them justice. We went from “attack of the floral monstrosity” to simplistic, white bliss.

To be honest, when Curtain Guy arrived I was beyond dubious. He laid out heavy white canvas sheets that he had cut to fit to our windows and then unpacked some lovely off-white sheers. I had a sudden fear that the ugliness was going on our side of the apartment and asked Hubby if he thought Curtain Guy would be willing to scrap the opaque curtains and simply hang the ones that would block peeping eyes but allow us to enjoy the Egyptian sun. Hubby insisted that I trust the person whose job it was to hang non-ugly curtains.

Given the odds, it was bound to happen eventually – Hubby was right and I was less right. (Unless you have photographic evidence, I am never actually wrong.) The new curtains look awesome. He hung the ugly opaque ones next to the window and they are covered quite lightly and elegantly by the off-white sheers. Better than that, I can open only the heavier layer, leaving the sheer toile-like fabric to filter the light and brighten my living room.

I realize that today’s blog is of little interest to anyone but me, but I’m excited about finally almost being comfortable in my new surroundings. The remainder of our things will arrive soon and my foray into nesting will be complete. Which leads us to the problem of what I’m going to do with my time when I finish nesting and the Housing Department works its way through the rather lengthy list I’m making of things that still need to be done to the flat. At this rate, I might be forced to go and get a life! *eek*


Anonymous said...

Like your father you are (probably) always right --or nearly always right...and that will definitely not make sense to anyone!
Looks like a great improvement:)

Greetekees said...

I understand your excitement! But at least, is this sofa comfortable?!

Connie said...

We've lived here nearly 4 years - but I am only just now 'nesting'. We arrived and I hit the ground running, as a full-time employee. We hired a nanny/housekeeper, got the kids in good schools, went to work. Stuff arrived, nanny unpacked and put stuff in places. It stayed. My spare time was for kids only. So, I quit... and I'm nesting. I am putting our house in our order for the first time in... well... I've always worked, so I guess, for the first time ever. I really like it! So, yes, your blog today is interesting to me :-) I appreciate what you are going through!