So I got back from Morocco last week and worked a whirlwind week of nights, but rest assured, I will be blogging about it over the next couple weeks. It was a beautiful country with amazing food, but truth be told, it’s the hardest country I’ve ever traveled in. Harder than India and Bangladesh combined.
We’re now part of the way thru Ramadan. Since I was working nights I wasn’t affected by the daytime fasting. Muslims here start fasting around 4am (Fajr prayer) and the fast isn’t broken until Maghrib prayer just before 7pm. Most of my patients stayed awake all night and had visitors into the wee hours. It’s very social and most of the families will offer the nurses food, chocolates and coffee. I’m back to day shift tomorrow which means most of my patients will be sleeping until mid-afternoon, and I’ll have to be inconspicuous while drinking water or snacking.
In August I have plans to visit Sharm El Sheikh for a few days. The situation in the Sinai peninsula has been increasingly problematic. Sharm El Sheikh sits on the southern tip of the peninsula, and while there have been no security incidents there, there has been an increased number of ISIS attacks in the peninsula and earlier this week tensions rose on the Egyptian/Israeli border as 2 rockets were fired into Israel. According to the Canadian and US travel alerts for Egypt, Sharm El Sheikh is still considered safe to travel to, so for now we’ll just wait and see. And maybe start researching a back-up plan should the situation worsen.
At the end of August I’ll be traveling to Malaysia and then on to Bali for 3 weeks on my own. I’m really excited to take part in a yoga and meditation retreat hosted by a fellow blogger Sarah Somewhere. I have been following her for years (in fact she was the inspiration for me convincing my 2 dearest friends to drive an auto rickshaw 3000km across India last year.) I’m so excited for some stillness and quietness, and to do yoga in a beautiful place. After the week retreat is over I’m planning on staying in Bali for another week for some R&R.
So those are my summer plans. My year contract here in Saudi ends the beginning of October. I’ll need to make a decision as to whether I’m going to extend until December, or re-contract until next year. My thoughts on it changes literally daily. If I have a good shift at work I think to myself I could stay another year no problem. Then, like everywhere I’ll have a bad shift and come home and be looking at plane tickets to fly home that night. Some days are great, others aren’t so much. But, there is always the ever addictive seemingly endless 54 calendar days of vacation that would be mine if I re-contracted for another year. Already in my head I’m planning future travels…….so we shall see…….