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Monday, August 29, 2011

Rain Rain, go away!

I must admit, I am so sick and tired of this rain.  Don't get me wrong, generally, I love the rain but this rain is preventing me from doing the things I love, like swim and see the sun!  But the real reason I hate the rain is because it's too hard and fast and I HAVE NO RAINCOAT!  I wouldn't mind it so much if I had my red rain coat but my friend who has my things, I have no way of reaching!  All attempts at contacting Rinku have failed.  So if you know Rinku and can get in touch with her, please tell her I want my rain coat!  :'( 
And this rain is ruining my favorite foods like leeks and other wonderful vegetables.  So yeah, I am tired of this rain.  It's so different than Yola rain.  Yola rain is at night and sunshine during the day.  It's lovely.  And Alaska and Minnesota rain is generally lighter and not so forceful.  So you can manage to walk around in it without becoming so incredibly soaking wet that it looks like you took a shower with your clothes on or jumped in a pool! 

I am ready for the hot and dry season!  BRING IT ON! 

Friday, August 26, 2011

Eclairs

So! Eclairs in Nigeria! The joys of Berger. These were my mom's favorite.



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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sawadee Thai Restaurant

So today I tried the new Thai restaurant at 45 Kumasi crescent. It's called Sawadee (spelling is wrong...supposed to be Sawatdee). Sawatdee in Thai mean hello or goodbye.

I ordered the pad thai (N2500) and it came with tiny shrimps. It was pretty good but was missing shredded carrots that is typical in one of my all-time favorite dishes.

I also ordered the shrimp and mayo roll. It was teeny tiny and costs 400 naira!!!! Don't order this. It's a waste of money.

They are brand new and just opening. I met one of the chefs and he's nigerian and used to work with Berger. He was very friendly. The food wasn't bad but it is on the high side price wise. Hopefully they will reduce the prices soon.

For now they are the only Thai place in town other than my kitchen ;)

Feel free to leave your own comment below.



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Ramadan

This post is probably going to get me into trouble but...here goes anyway.

This whole fasting during the month of Ramadan has me surrounded by a bunch of zombies. My driver and the secretary in my office are constantly dozing off. I am talking about at least 10 times a day. They are so not mentally there at all. I understand giving something up to understand the meaning of sacrifice but honestly for the working class it's dangerous and renders them utterly useless at their workplaces.

What do you think? Is fasting over the top?


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Volunteers Needed!

Volunteers are needed for this Sunday august 28th for the Abuja Half Marathon dedicated to Jason Campbell

If you are interested in volunteering at a water stop or helping with registering runners, walkers or bikers please contact Chris @ cp.henderson@naosupport.org


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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Jealousy

'There is no greater glory than love, nor any greater punishment than jealousy' –Lope de Vega 

So one thing I have learned in my lifetime is that relationships are hard.  And I am not just talking about romantic ones, friendships can be very hard too.  Now one of the issues I have had many problems with in my relationship is with jealousy.  I despise, loathe and downright hate jealousy, yet it catches me every now and again and stings and burns like crazy!  However, these days, we seem to both have it under control on both ends.  Something that isn't easy to do but is a must, especially in long distance relationships.  

However, the current issue of jealousy in my life is not with my man, it's with my girl friend.  She has caught the jealousy bug and it has made her behave in ways that I have never seen her act like before.  I've never really experience jealousy from a friend like this before so I don't really know how to handle it.  And it's a lot more difficult for me to deal with than the jealousy in my love life because when it comes to my love life, I am a jealous and protective woman.  I want my man all to myself.  I will admit it.  I am an extremely jealous woman.  But I haven't the foggiest idea of how to deal with it with my girl friend because I have never personally been jealous of my friend's being friends with someone else.  If a friend was becoming close with another friend I would generally just let it be.  If the friendship was strong enough, I knew that we'd always be friends and the newness of the other friend would eventually wear off or maybe it wouldn't but c'est la vie.  

So now I am left with the quandary.  Am I the bigger person and discuss the jealousy with her?  Or do I say, no, I will not tolerate this childish behaviour and start a fight?  In the meantime, I've been giving silent treatment.  (by the way, not an easy thing for me to do!).  So in the meantime, I wait it out.  However, I am especially surprised at her lack of awareness of her behaviour and her jealousy.  

I do believe that feeling jealousy is in itself showing affection and love for that person but what you do with that jealousy is how you show that person that 'hey, I love you and I just don't want to lose you.'  I don't think have jealous feelings means you don't really love the person, or that you are weak and scared.  Nothing is set in stone.  Most things are not forever.  No one wants to be left behind or broken up with.  Jealousy to me is natural but to me it's the worse of the seven deadly sins because I feel like it's the one we have the least amount of control over.  It takes us over with a wild passion and in most cases all reason and logic is abandon and we turn into crazy people.  

What are your thoughts on jealousy? 

'There is never jealousy where there is not strong regard.' –Washington Irving



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Feedback por favor!

So I've been having a lot of emails lately from my blog. It seems like I have far more readers than I'm really aware of.

So! I want your thoughts, please. So please either post your comment here or drop me a mail at yusufiyah@gmail.com

I really want to hear what you think and what you'd like to hear or see more of.


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Eat local

So I'm trying to cook more at home and eat more fruits and veggies.

I've already improved my water intake to at least two bottles a day which is a major improvement for me. Also, I'm taking a minimum of one yogurt a day as well. However, I'm not so good at cutting my carb intake and increasing my veggies. I love veggies but my schedule is so tight and I'm doing an awful job at finding the time for cooking. :(

So I have begun ordering from Zamani farms in Jos. I'm excited to have fresh produce delivered to my door. I reminds me of going to my CSA pick ups back in the day in Minneapolis.

I will post pictures of the produce and what I make. If you live in Abuja and want their contact information just e-mail me at yusufiyah@gmail.com

And don't forget to eat local. It's better for you, the economy and the people in your community.


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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Half Marathon in Abuja this Sunday

Half Marathon this Sunday August 28th, 2011 in Abuja (beginning near the Dome).

7k laps x 3 (you can choose to do 1, 2 or all 3)

E-mail katehallet@gmail.com for more information.


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Monday, August 22, 2011

Positive/No complaints

This week focus on the things you do right.

Focus on the things other's do right.

If we do this, I believe maybe we will be a little happier!

Just my two cents for the today!!!


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Rain or Shine Hash

The hash this weekend was quite special. Miss Stephanie is no longer a virgin. I had my naming ceremony. I will forever be known as "Secret Spanxxx" at every hash I go to. Plus, in my humble opinion it was the best hash I've been on. I really enjoyed it.

By the way, we no longer meet at the hilton parking lot. We now meet at Durban Park.

On on!


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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Alligator at Zimbabwe Market

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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Flora

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Not even that close and I'm soaked!

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Na wa o

It was so misty. It was so serene.
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So majestic

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The river at Farin Ruwa

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Muhammad

This is my driver, Muhammad.
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Kate @ farin ruwa

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Farin Ruwa

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Farewell to my boys

So...my boys leave today. They are finished serving their term here in Nigeria.
Today, I say, "well done o!" to both Hannes and Nico. I'm happy to have met you, spent holidays with you and traveled together and I wish you both all the best.
So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye! (Sai an jima and Odaro!)



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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

My tortelloni

At Da Maria.


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Da Maria dessert again

Nico enjoying his dessert.


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Da Maria

Hannes enjoying his dessert.


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Dessert @ Da Maria

This was my fig dessert at Da Maria. I really wish it had been pistachio like she said. :(



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City View Restaurant

I've been to City View many times to eat and for the chop after the hash. I know the owner Ali as well. I highly recommend there shawarma, cheese rolls and this is the chicken burger. It was delicious.

It's a great Lebanese restaurant and the prices are very reasonable.

The also have a bakery attached where they sell bread, doughnuts, meatpies and the like.


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REVIEW: Da Maria Restaurant

Located on Aminu Kano Crescent is Wuse II.

We ate at Da Maria a couple weekends ago. The decor is fantastic but the food is lacking a bit, in my humble opinion. I love Italian food. In fact, I even cheated and ate some very glutinous things while we were there (and I regretted this severely later).

The food does seem to be quite authentic, although I am not exactly sure which region of Italy they seem to be choosing their cuisine from. Most of us who don't live in Italy have a very different idea of what Italian food is. It's usually quite basic and most dishes do not have a whole lot of ingredients in them. So I would say that there style is authentic but again, as to which region, I am not sure of.

I had the tortelloni (as did Nico) and it was good but was lacking in flavor or spice. I know it was definitely lacking in those things for Nico as he's become a yaji addict since living in Nigeria, but even for me it was lacking at least nutmeg and maybe some garlic or red pepper flakes. The prices are a bit too high in my opinion, even though making a restaurant in Abuja work and with the cost of importation, but in my opinion the cost isn't really worth it. You can make really good Italian food without importing EVERYTHING and it doesn't have to cost a lot per dish either.

We had two appetizers and there was no balsamic vinegar on the caprese salad (which I don't like anyway but that was strange as it is a basic ingredient and the boys tried the balsamic on the table and said it was either sour or to wine-like tasting, so it's probably for the best anyway).

We all had desserts. The desserts are definitely imported, possibly from Italy. The hostess (possibly owner or one of them) is not very good at translating the desserts from the book and I took the pistachio dessert, as she described it, but it turned out to be fig and I do think it was a bit old because it almost tasted slightly fermented. Nico's too also tasted fermented or slightly sour. The desserts were all at least 1000 plus naira in cost. It would be nice if they would make them locally instead of importing them and charging people ludicrous amounts and having fresh desserts.

They change their menu daily, which is something I do like. But over all, it was just an okay dining experience, that was over-priced (but that is typical here in Nigeria and especially in Abuja). They serve a lot of steak on the menu but I still recommend going to Obudu over Da Maria because the price is less and you get so much for what you pay for at Obudu in the Sheraton.

I have yet to go to Ciao or La Dolce Vita (but I think they might have closed down). Risotto remains to be one of my favorite dishes and they did not have it while we were there and I make it so well anyways, there isn't much need for me to eat it while I am out anyway. I will post some pictures later in different posts.


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Never giving up hope

No matter what...I won't give up hope. I will stay strong, vigilant and patient.


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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Farin Ruwa

This picture is of Farin Ruwa in Nasarawa state in Nigeria. It's a few hours drive from Abuja. There are several river crossing and serious bush so you must use a hilux like we did (in my humble opinion). According to several sources, Farin Ruwa is the highest waterfall in West Africa. Farin Ruwa in Hausa means white water. If you can go while you are in Nigeria I highly recommend it. It's truly a jungle surrounding it. I really enjoyed coming here. And to think...I almost didn't come.


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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Espresso @ Da Maria

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Friday, August 5, 2011

World domination!!!

We played RISK tonight and the Brits dominated and conquered!!!!


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RISK night

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Giraffe

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Giraffe

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Mom and baby monkey

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Monkey

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Tortoise

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Crocodile

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Giraffe

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Aso Rock
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A camel
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Eeyore!
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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Nico enjoying coffee

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