|Thus unusual trio of walkers caught our attention. Two men in black, one in front and one in the back - complete with shades and the ear piece - accompanied this lady while she went for a walk on the Corniche. |
That is of course until you find out that some 25 people died during fighting in Tripoli this week. 25? 25! Wow! When did that happen? That’s what you get when you don’t listen to the news. 25 dead sounds to me like a full scale war out there. I ask the old aunt living in our house whether her friend in Tripoli is noticing this. “She’s not home right now,” is the reply. “She was visiting her parents in the mountains, and couldn’t go back because of snipers in the area.” I guess that’s a good thing. Sort of. It’s gone beyond gunfire however; now they’re shelling each other with mortars. It’s odd how life goes on as if nothing is going on, some 80 kilometers south of Tripoli.
I had to teach my son today how to get the mecanique done for his car. The mecanique is the annual car quality check, a bit like the Dutch APK. It requires a visit to the mecanique place, of course. I had done it earlier this month, but on a weekday, and quite early, so there weren’t that many people in the place. They’ve got like 20 assembly lines, so that process goes quite quickly. I had also totally forgotten about the positive discrimination in this place. When I do my mecanique, I enter the line for women. There’s usually only about 4 of them in front of me. Which is like a ratio of 1 : 250 to the men’s line.
But this morning, there were like a 2,000 men; they were lining up halfway down the parking lot. Holy moly! And my son does not get to stand in the line for the women; that was going to be a 8 hour job just getting to the front desk getting you number checked. And so we abandoned that plan and drove back home.
‘Driving Miss Daisy, ’ that’s what my son calls it when I get into his car. I object to the G-forces his driving style exerts on my neck, and apparently I inhale too sharply every time he passes too closely by another car. He stops too late, drives too fast, and honks too quickly and too long. At least, that’s what I think. I do hear – somewhere in the background – an echo of my father, when he would sit beside me in the passenger seat. Life comes full circle at one point, I guess.
|The Corniche in the evening|