Thursday, October 31, 2013

Butterfly Halloween

Pau's nursery school class, the Butterflies, showed up in their finest "fancy dress up."

Fall Festival

Andrés elementary school has a huge Halloween celebration called Fall Festival. It begins with a costume parade.
Andrés was definitely the cutest, if not the only, Spiderman.
Yes, that is a hand sticking out of the boy's head.
The sumo wrestler and the bacon (not shown) were my personal favorites.
Swashbuckling pirate and mini Captain America. 
Andrés' class booth. Volunteer moms from each elementary school class made a game booth and the kids went from booth to booth playing games and winning treats. 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Monday, October 28, 2013

Pumpkin Carving

Pau carries his chosen pumpkin. 
Master Carver at work.*
Captain America scoops out seeds.
Saber tooth tiger teeth and goblin ears.
* Pumpkin carving is extra special in our family. A pumpkin carving party in Somerville in 2002 was where Miquel and I first met. The rest is history!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Coffee with Locals

We drove to the very end of the most remote road on the Sayq Plateau in Oman. There we found a village where we explored the reservoir and caves. 

Walking back to our car we noticed that we had a following - the village boys were curious about us so we all said hello and tried to talk.
Before long, and with almost no common language, they had invited us to their house (more like a small walled compound of 3 buildings) for "cafe." These boys, ranging in age from 3-13, set down a rug on the patio and brought us a pitcher of arabic coffee and a tray of fruit. 
Needless to say, our boys devoured the fruit. Then the father arrived and offered us some goat from their Eid feast. 
The boys all played together and had fun. Later three girls arrived - they were incredibly shy but inquired, " My name is?" So we all introduced ourselves. Their mother arrived and we all sat and smiled at eachother. There were two teenage boys who spoke some English. It was lovely. They invited us to stay for a meal but we had to be on our way. What a fun time we all had!

Views from the Road

Wellekm to Hat

We crossed another mountain range lined with these irrigation channels called falaj. The flow all the way down the mountains and into a reservoir and more channels.
In the valley is a spectacular oasis town called Hat.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Amazing Stone Village

"Let's go check out that stone village built into the side of the mountain."

"Look! They've got goats in there!"
This is no ancient ruin - it's a collection of buildings, animal pens, and terraced gardens still in use.
The valley is terraced with overgrown fruit trees. Goat blood in the foreground is from the Eid Al Adha sacrifice. The skin was drying on some rocks nearby.
There's the shower. A pipe with water flowing from the ancient (looking) irrigation system.

There's the bath tub.
Those wires are the pulley system used to transport stuff across the small valley. It looks like the people who use this little village live just across the valley in a cluster of contemporary concrete homes.
The view from inside one of the structures, looking at the contemporary homes across the valley. Not shown here is the electricity meter and outlets located in the stone walls behind me.

The walkway has a grapevine and citrus arbor.
In this stone mountainside village we saw lemons, limes, grapes, papayas, pomegranates.