Monday, December 27, 2004

Improving international relations...

In the Spirit of Christmas, I am doing what I can to spread joy whereever I go ... as always.

For example, I was at the Sultan Center (the Kuwaiti equivalent of Wal-Mart) on Christmas Day, picking up some last minute things. I couldn't find marshmallows for hot chocolate, so I opted for whipped cream. While I was standing in front of the dairy case trying to figure out the Arabic word for "whipped", a man ran his shopping cart into my ankle. I turned around and there was a Kuwaiti man (wearing traditional dress), and he said something in Arabic that I assumed was an apology. I nodded my acceptance and resumed my search. He hits my ankle again. I turn and look at him expecting more Arabic and I realize he's expecting me to get out of his way. This arrogant man in a dress has ran his shopping cart into me twice because he could not wait the 4.5 seconds it was going to take me to to find what I was looking for.

Now, at this point, those of you that think you know me well are probably assuming that I'm taking this out of context. That I have misconstrued his intentions, jumped to an illogical conclusion, and am about to react in a inappropriate manner.

You're wrong.

I have lived here for almost a year and a half, and I have a general feeling about the people here. No matter how much they appreciate what the United States has done for them, we are still no better than hired thugs, and only a LITTLE better than the TCN (third-country national) they hire to scrub their toilets and bring them their tea. Not ALL Kuwaitis have this opinion, but there are quite a few that do... and this guy was one of them.

So after taking a second (literally) to ascertain his intentions, and another second to make sure he's not armed, I kicked his shopping cart back into him. It wasn't a little tap, but it wasn't near as hard as I could have, or really wanted. It was just hard enough to push the handle out of hands, and into his mid-section.

Judging from his initial reaction, it was NOT what he expected. After a couple of seconds he launches into a tirade of what I can only assume were threats and insults. I asked him "English?" and he stopped long enough to say "NO ENGLISH!" and resumed his tirade. I saw a stock-boy run off towards the front of the store and I turned back to the dairy case to get the whipped cream, bracing myself for another cart-crash into my ankle ... which doesn't happen. But he's still going on, so I say "have a Merry Christmas" and go to the front of the store to pay. As I'm standing in line he walks up with a manager who seems very confused, and asks me what has happened. I told him my version of events, and when he relayed it to the ankle-assaulting little weasel he denied that he had ever hit me with his cart.

At this point, I just gave up. I paid for my whipped cream and left, while they were standing around figuring out what to do next. For all I know they have an APB out for a "Tall, Blonde-Haired, Blue-Eyed Westerner with a can of whipped cream and possible limp", but I could care less. C'est la vie, c'est la guerre...

On a lighter note, Shelley got the new pictures uploaded!!! There are some REALLY good ones in there, but as we all know, I'm a bit biased...

Wrap me up and send me to DAD!!!

Look Mom, it's EASY to set the time on this!!!

Love to all!

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