Tuesday, May 29, 2007

My new house

Weery of the kitchen construction, the perpetual car horns from the busy street below my room, and the early-morning sun from the east-facing windows, I moved.

About 10 minutes walking from my old house, in the Muslim neighborhood called Qaimariya, which speads along a straight, cobbled road from the Umayyid Mosque, I found a new house, which I share with five other foreigners. My room is the largest, with a ceiling high enough for a basketball hoop.

This is my view, from the two upstairs windows.

In the late mornings, Abu Tareq, the elderly caretaker who wears the same blue sweat pants and white t-shirt, or brown galabiyah, comes to water the many plants and vines in the courtyard, occasionally wash the dishes, and clean the common areas, including the liwan, the large outdoor covered patio, which is frequently bombarded by birds who nest in the wooden beams above. It's designed to be the coolest part of the house -- as every liwan, it faces north, so receives the least direct sunlight -- but sitting there brings unique risks.