Two days! That's how much longer I have in Tunisia! And then I get on a plane and pray that I'm not stuck behind someone in the security line in New York who decides to get all uppity about his 4th Amendment rights. I'm enlisting all of you to be on the prayer team that I make it on all of my flights (just 3 this time!) and am home with enough time to sleep before I feast on stuffing and pie.
Here's a smattering of random pictures from the trip that I never got around to writing about.
1.) There's an American military cemetary down the street where guys who were killed in WWII fighting in North Africa are buried. It's a very lovely and peaceful place and it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside seeing the American flag waving. I am not an overtly patriotic person but gosh I missed America.
2.) This is President Ben Ali. He loves you. How do you know? Because his picture is everywhere with his hand over his heart just smiling at you. His picture is all over the country. In the grocery stores, in tchotchke shops, in the parks, on billboards and posters, on banners draped across the city streets. Don't try to get away from him! There is one picture of him wearing a robe that looks like he should be teaching at Hogwarts that I saw a lot of down south.
5.) (This is primarily for my Dad and brothers and anyone else who is fascinated by how things are built). They build houses here with brick, including the floors/ceilings. Then they cover it with plaster and tile and paint it white. This house is being built around the corner from us and Henry and I often sit on the curb and watch the men work because there's a tractor nearby and Henry thinks tractors are the greatest thing since cold milk in a sippy cup. When I say men working I actually just mean two. There are only ever two men on the site and they are usually just standing around talking.
6.) The great mosque in Kairouan is the 4th holiest sight in the Muslim world. I went there on my Grand Saharan Adventure and discovered that there are over 300 columns...all pilfered from Roman ruins. See how there are slabs of wood wedged in on top when the columns weren't tall enough? Isn't that awesome? Actually, the entire place was built from pilfered material. Some of the stones had roman writing on them. Unfortunately it was just after we went to this mosque that we got lunch at some local joint where I got food poisoning and later prayed for death. Oh Kairouan, you charmer.
7.) Tunis - and surrounding areas - is very modern. But you can't tell that to the guy who drives the donkey cart through our neighborhood collecting trash.