We the Party

Do we still have coal, the text message reads. BBQ tonight? In Algiers, our home has become the unofficial Friday or Saturday night hang-out. I attribute it to our roomy outdoor terrace, the pingpong table that doubles as a snack station during parties, and the lack of any other restaurant, bar, or scintillating nightlife in…

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The Casbah of Algiers

A stronghold, a fortress – the Casbah of Algiers lies in ruin. Up on the hill, we gaze down at the sea while standing between buildings on the verge of collapse, all in different states of disrepair and neglect. We meet up with our guide early on a Friday morning. Below is a sprawling, chaotic…

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Ear Ache

Turbulence hits, the seatbelt sign lights up. My daughter leans her head on my lap and I loosen her seatbelt for her – a meaningless gesture of comfort in a very uncomfortable situation. The night before, I lay in bed fretting over a 2-hour flight with a feverish kid. And so here we are. Our…

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To London

I’ve been back in France for about a month now, and things have piled up around here, so I’ll simply backtrack from the most recent happenings… Now, is it just me, or is there something really weird about a train that goes underwater only to pop out in a different country? Apparently, the whole train-under-the-water…

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Song Mood: Wake Up

You know those days, don’t you – those days when you aren’t motivated at all to get out of bed? I have conducted various experiments over the years and have come to the conclusion that music is extremely helpful in dragging your body out of the warm, comfortable covers and into the cruel world … So here I am, still in…

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The Port of El Djamila

It’s only 9:30 am, but the sun is already beating down hard in Algeria. At El Djamila port, ex-La Madrague, a seaside town 20 kilometres west of Algiers, fathers are already slathering their agitated children in suntan lotion and are having a hard time doing so.  Something about the proximity of open water drives kids…

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Steps

As expected, you go through an adjustment period when you are expatriated. You follow certain steps, if you will. First, it’s Excitement. You can’t wait to get there! The visa takes too long! Where the hell is my plane ticket? My bags are packed! Damn this traffic to the airport! Then, it’s Discovery. The airport…

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