THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #236

Ever since finding that deal, I’ve had my eyes peeled — what a horrifying expression, I need to look that up. Bear with…bear with…well that was a wild ride. According to linguists, the expression first appeared in American English around 1850 and was derived from a latin word that meant “to pillage.” Over the years, the original spelling became bastardized to “peel” and it meant to remove, which it still kind of does. So, the expression means to remove any covering from the eye, not to literally peel your eye away, which would seem to defeat the purpose. Anyway, back to the main point.

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #235

I miss getting into playful Egyptological arguments with scholars over martinis at The Royal Bar. I even miss the touts demanding baksheesh and donkey drivers hollering at me. I miss the filth in the streets and the flies that buzz around the horses. I miss the robes and the heat and the ferry across the Nile. I miss the cacophony of sounds at night when you’d hear honking horns and bellowing camels and the call to prayer. It suited me and I need to get back. Once I get this terrible year behind me, I’m going to treat myself to a glorious return to the sands of Egypt. 

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #231

I’ve never been over it, so when I found this note addressed to a young woman that was certainly not me, I felt like it could have been addressed to me. “I wish you the best in life,” Barbara told a woman named Caitlin but it might as well have been me. It could not have been a coincidence. It was simply too fortuitous. And as Lady M told me one evening on the rooftop in Giza, there is no such thing as a coincidence. Coincidences aren’t real. And I would never have learned that life changing affirmation or valuable lesson from Lady M if it hadn’t been for Barbara Mertz. I finally went to Egypt in 2014 because of Barbara and it changed my life for the better. I feel so immensely blessed.

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #224

Cairo was not one of my favorite places. I can’t even pretend that it was. I found the place chaotic and fascinating, but when I was there for a week, I failed to develop any irrational passion for the city. Luxor and Paris and Turin and Mexico City and Los Angeles, well, those were all different. I immediately loved them, oftentimes for no reason, often for the way they made me feel. Cairo made me feel vulnerable and foolish at first. I didn’t understand the city, and I can’t claim that I do now.

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #219

I have no love or deep appreciation of space. It doesn’t thrill me. I have no real interest in ever visiting even though that might be possible by the time I die. I wouldn’t mind going to a five star resort on the Moon. That’d be extra and surely a good story, but I have no desire to shoot off to Mars and die. Why go anywhere without a Hilton or an Olive Garden?

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Ancient Remains in English: Unexpected Leftovers from Ancient Egypt

I have never taken classes during the summer before, and they have taken up a lot of my time. If you’re in need of reading material while I work on the usual blogs, please enjoy the research paper that I spent the past few weeks furiously researching. I’m rather proud of it. Hopefully you have an interest in the connections between modern English and ancient Egyptian vocabulary!

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #219

There is something so tragic about eating with plastic cutlery in a take out bowl. Am I being too ridiculous? I don’t think so. So, I can recommend you getting this food to take out and then plating at home on some more fashionable pieces of tableware with nice millennial gold forks. That’ll be fine. And when you’re at home you can imagine that the waitor at Tucci is back with the block of Parmesan and life is decadent and nothing is bad.

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #213

When I get overwhelmed by the overbearing Americanness of Iowa I can escape to places like this. For me, there is honestly nothing quite so refreshing as sitting in a strange place listening to conversations in languages I can’t even name as I devour something hearty and delicious. That food made me feel so good. Maybe I should marry an Indian guy who’s a chef. That is probably one of the better ideas I’ve ever had. Please send in your applications for my hand in marriage, gentlemen. Cheers. 

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THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #206

Picture it, Paris 2009, a cozy winter night, me in a vintage Dior suit, snow gently falling and making the streets glitter under the yellow streetlights. There I am in a highly regarded restaurant on Left Bank just a stone’s throw from Notre Dame. That evening would prove to be one of the most influential in my gastronomic life.

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