Predictably Unpredictable

My in laws are nearing the end of their first trip to London. At the beginning of their stay, as they started to see what our life was like here, they kept commenting on how things would be different “once we settled into a routine.” I think now they’ve realized, like us, that the next three years will be quite the opposite. Disorderly, unusual and irregular are all antonyms for “normal,” but so are exceptional, extraordinary and rare, so I’ll take it. My previously ritualistic life of packing breakfast and lunch for work everyday, pre-planning dinners for the week, and catching up nightly on our favorite TV shows has quickly been replaced with grabbing pre-made salads for dinner, booking international plane tickets hours in advance for Mark, and going to the theater on a Tuesday night.

The past two days have been particularly insane. I think that God is preparing me for the craziness motherhood (not in the near future), where plans and organization might as well be tossed out the window from what I’ve heard. At the end of the day, I’m happy with my nutty life, even if it means that I ordered online grocery delivery two days in a row and combined three ready-made salads and called it dinner tonight.

Here’s a quick recep…



8:00am – Catch up on emails
Best way to communicate with friends who are mostly sleeping while I’m awake or awake while I’m sleeping. Plus, I’m really not sure how to mail things here so I’m sending birthday eCards.

9:00am – Arrange transportation from airport to hotel in Spain next week
I called the hotel to ask if they have transportation, and was transferred to the appropriate person. I asked the question again and heard the person on the other end of the line promptly hang up the phone, probably because they had no idea what I was saying since I was speaking English. After an hour and a half of research, I found a reasonable car service. Thank goodness for google.

10:45am – Research what to do with the flowers that I bought
This is my first attempt to garden. I bought a bunch of autumn plants and sort of remembered what the guy at the nursery said to do with them. A few made it into pots last week, but I needed to figure out how to keep the rest alive. I tried facetiming with my mom to ask her, and also questioned my mother in law on what to do with them, and they both kind of looked at me quizzically, not really knowing what they were or how on earth they would last at this time of year. An hour later, I sort of identified what the plants were and what to do with them. Thank goodness for google.

12:30pm – Find a couple of recipes for brunch and dinner for our next guest, K.Fost
Boom. Finally, something easy. Now time for the online grocery order. Not so fast… seeing brake lights. Recipes are in imperial units, grocery items are in metric units. Thank goodness for google.

2:00pm – Should go to the gym
Typically, I would drag myself to the gym about now, but Mark has just learned that he’ll find out at 3:15 if he needs to go to Saudi Arabia… tonight. He was supposed to leave this morning, but his Visa was not finalized in time.

3:15pm – Book trip to Saudi Arabia
The Visa company has confirmed that Mark’s Visa will be delivered by 4:00pm, so he’s frantically packing, while I try to book his flights. Online booking is not working because the flight is in 4 hours, so I call the airline to make the reservation. The booking agent’s seriously thick accent and a lot of required information and re-confirmation of information make for a very long reservation process. But alas, my middle eastern airline friend from Qatar Airlines and I have success. (Fortunately, he didn’t hang up on me like the Spanish woman)

3:45pm – Book car service
While Mark is confirming plans, I realize he needs to take a car to the airport rather than to tube so that he has cell service to make sure he’s not stranded at the airport in Dummam. I call the airport driver that we use and they have someone on the way. [Mark hails me for my greatness and helpfulness]

4:30pm – Makeover
Mark leaves for the airport and I attempt to look somewhat respectable for the theater. My in laws and I have plans to go see “The Commitments”, a new musical. Forty five minutes later, I look halfway decent, in dim light.

7:15pm – Showtime
Wahoo, upgraded seats! The attendant points us away from the balcony, where we purchased seats, and down to the orchestra. Two hours later, I’m on a musical high and have to pinch myself back to the reality that this is really my very exciting life. We just saw a broadway musical for less than a movie.

10:30pm – It’s not all sunshine and roses
I receive a text from our landlady that the hot water in the master bathroom has been turned off, the pipe was leaking. I take a cold shower, which abruptly stops the happy showtunes from playing in my head.

11:00pm – iMessage 🙂
My friend Linsey texts me a photo of her two year old, Gavin, looking delighted and eating (by his own request) half of a lemon for his snack, and Ellie (3 months) looking infuriated and sitting (not by request) in a pumpkin. My bursts of laughter help the goosebumps from the cold shower disappear.


3:30am – Woman instincts wake me up, Mark should be landing in Qatar. Check my phone- sure enough, Mark texted to confirm. Where is Qatar!? Make mental note to check map tomorrow.

6:00am – Woman instincts wake me up again. Damn. Mark should be at the hotel in Saudi. Email from Mark confirms.

8:00am – Finally a little normalcy, I spend the morning working.

11:50am – Grocery delivery order from yesterday arrives

12:00pm – Eleven friends are now coming for dinner and cake on Friday for Mark’s birthday! Place another online grocery order for delivery tomorrow. This grocery guy must think I’m on a binge.

5:00pm – Finish work and head to the gym. Email husband while power walking on the treadmill. Text sister in between. Running may burn more calories, but power walking allows for multitasking.

7:00pm – Pick up pre-cooked chicken, pre-made bean and corn salad and lettuce for dinner. Don’t judge, no one cooks here, it’s like New York.

A very happy birthday to my lovely grandma! She is pretty cool and savvy- does your grandma read blogs?

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