Archive | January, 2008

I’d hate to be the guy who cut the cable…

31 Jan

Apparently, some genius cut an intercontinental cable that powers the internet for Egypt, Saudi Arabia and India. Occasionally it works for a minute or two, but the Embassy is telling us it will be several days before its fully restored. In the meantime, things here are good. Finn is wonderful and we can’t get enough of him, except at 4 am. I want to bathe him constantly because he’s so soft and smells so good afterwards. Meanwhile, he’s getting to know me as the creepy lady who won’t stop sniffing his hair. Patrick has headed back to work and starts teaching on Sunday. LeAnn navigated the Khan last night and came home with a plethora of goodies. She bought so much at one place that they gave her a free canvas bag covered in hieroglyphs to put everything in.

Anyways, more posting and pictures once someone duct tapes that ocean cable.


Announcing Finn Javier Mason

25 Jan

As Patrick and Dad have posted, we welcomed Finn Javier Mason into our family at 7:45 am Egyptian time on Thursday, Jan 24.


Finn is doing well and seems to be enjoying getting to know us. He and Patrick have already formed a close bond and have talked about when they’ll be going to their first baseball game. I’m feeling good and having lots of fun staring at Finn while he sleeps. All three of us are head over heels in love with each other.

Thanks for your well wishes. It’s wonderful to hear from so many great friends.

The Finn-ish line

24 Jan

As noted by the proud Grandpa De Leon, Finn Javier Mason was born this morning (January 24) at 7:45am. Vital stats, for those keeping track of such things: 8 lbs 6 oz, and about 21 inches. (They measure everything here in metric, so I was frantically pulling out my cell phone calculator to convert kilograms and centimeters into real numbers.) His apgar scores were also very high, which of course is a very reliable indicator of long-term success in life. Continue reading

The Last Day

23 Jan

Finally, a feeling of certainty! I am certain that by tomorrow morning we will have gotten this labor process under way. There will indeed be a baby on the way, whether he likes it or not. I hope he likes it. Really, he has no choice. But I hope we can make his welcome into the world as comfortable as possible.

Last night Patrick and I went out on what we jokingly called our Last Date. From the horror stories we’ve heard, we figured that it would be awhile before just the two of us could slip out and enjoy a dinner together. Then again, we plan to train Finn to travel well from the getgo, so if all goes well I imagine we’ll still be able to be quite mobile. Of course, I have no idea what I’m talking about and all the mothers out there who know better are rolling their eyes at me. We’re planning to climb Mt. Sinai with him in a backpack in a couple of months. A bit naive, I fear? Continue reading

Are you still pregnant?

22 Jan


The end is (not) near (enough)

17 Jan

Quick update. We just got back from the doctor. He checked everything out, and says that all signs are that an induction would be successful. He’s a by-the-book kind of guy, and says there are no reasons why he should induce early, and wants to give the baby every chance to come naturally. All good things…except when you’re overdue and desperate. He set a date for induction for next Thursday (Jan 24). The flip side is that because everything is progressing so well, he thinks–but can’t be sure–that labor will start itself “pretty soon.”

“Pretty soon.” That’s all we got.

Mom Sees Dead People

17 Jan

(Note: This is a guest post by Mom. I’m resting and going radio-silent today, avoiding the phone and the outside world – Mel)

Our latest excursion was to the Egyptian Museum. It is an incredible place filled with hundreds of people, many of them dead!

Seriously, there were halls and halls of mummies, their coffins, and sarcophagus. There were statues and sculptures more than 4,000 years old! I saw thousand year old writings on papyrus that looked like they had been written yesterday.

But the most amazing was the King Tut hall. Melissa and Patrick had seen the actual King Tut mummy and outer sarcophagus at his tomb in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor. The museum here as the two inner sarcophagus. They were incredible! Very beautiful! His very famous actual face mask was here also. It was larger than I imagined. There were hundreds of items on display from his tomb. We saw jewelry, clothing, pottery, weapons, and many other things. His chariots were here also! He had at least five in the tomb with him. From Land Cruiser size to Honda size! The funniest thing I saw were the shoes that were taken off the actual mummy. They were gold-gilded chanclas! It seems flip-flops were in style even then. He had really big feet for a little guy.(Note: you know what they say about mummies with big feet… – Mel) Continue reading

You’re STILL here?!

14 Jan

It’s gotten to the point where people are laughing at me.

I know that sounds paranoid, but I’m serious. Yesterday Mom and I were taking a walk when a friend passed by in her car. All I heard was her laughing and saying “you’re still here?” and then she was gone. To her credit, it wasn’t like she was trying to laugh and run, taxis were forcing her to keep going so she couldn’t stop and chat. But still, for a moment I just saw a car blur by and heard someone cackling at me. I felt like the world was mocking my round, waddling state.

This morning I went in and met with someone from Egypt Today, a big English language magazine here in Egypt. I’m probably going to be taking a job with them (part-time, I get to set my own hours and work on my own timetable) proofing copy for each month’s issue. The editor knew I was pregnant and when he saw me come in, he asked when the due date was. I muttered “yesterday” and noticed his eyes grew large and fearful.

At this point, either Kelly is going to win the due date competition or nobody is. Then again, I could reopen it for more guesses, but at this point I feel like I’d have to take bets on dates through February, because that seems to be what this kid is aiming for.

Sigh. Maybe tonight…

Inshallah, Finshallah

10 Jan

We started calling Baby Finn “Finnshallah” as a joke. Everyone here says “inshallah” so often and for such ridiculous reasons that we’ve become quite fond of the word. In Patrick’s endless litany of absurd nicknames for the baby, Finnshallah was just one of many. Now here we are, past two due dates growing extremely impatient and we find ourselves echoing the Egyptians by answering “inshallah” when people ask us when the baby is coming. Inshallah- literally meaning “when God wills it,” but more often used to say “I have no clue.” Finnshallah has turned out to be quite an appropriate nickname.

Finn, why aren’t you here yet? Aren’t you as excited to join us as we are to welcome you? We’re fluttering around folding tiny clothes and packing bags for a late night rush to the hospital while you flutter around giving the occasional kick and then going back to sleep. Are you just preparing us for parenthood, where we run around anxious and panicky, while you yawn and wonder what all the fuss is about? Continue reading

No news is…no news

7 Jan

In his first act of disobedience, Finnshallah did not decide to make his debut yesterday, despite my certainty that January 6 is a good round number for a birthday. Today there’s a cluster of people predicting this will be the day, plus its Grandma Bertha and Uncle Joel’s birthdays, so I think that’s a good sign. We’re venturing out to the other side of the city to explore the Khan al-Khalili bazaar. Far from home, unpaved roads in the form of a maze, scary men yelling “I don’t know what you want, but I have what you need!” I think all this together may brew the perfect conditions for labor.

Yesterday Patrick got a mini-Mini CD player so we could play the awesome Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, etc rock lullabies that Mom and Dad gave Finn for Christmas. The hood opens and the Cd tray comes out of the front bumper. After years of wanting one, I finally have a Mini!

Happy birthday Grandma Bertha and Uncle Joel!!!