I tell you...

April appreciation,

April has been a pleasant surprise this year.  The typical April weather has been evasive this year. April thus has shown a vast amount of modesty and restraint... I can still walk outside and not be met with an impenetrable wall of heat that forces me to momentarily stop in my tracks, gasp, breathe out slowly and continue on- quickly- to my destination, which usually consists of another air conditioned environment.

Instead, April has been lovely, tantalizing even! I've been able to run on the A`ali running track in relative peace. Sure I sweat, but it's not dripping into my eyeballs. The air conditioning in my room was on for a few days last week, but not the past few nights.  I've hardly had it on in my living room as well.  It's not even necessary- yet...

April has abated, for whatever reason.

The Bahrain Heritage Festival is happening right now.  Music, food, crafts, people-watching, etc. The community spirit comes alive in the evenings here in Bahrain, as well as throughout the MENA region I have found. 

As I prepare to depart my sweet host country that I have called home for the past 2 years, many things vie for my attention: That Egyptian bakery at Al Waqif Souk, Muharraq old town, the coffee shop at the King Fahad Causeway in the middle (never seems to be open), hanging out at Capitol Mall 'shooting the shit' (talk story) with the basket weaver old man that has a twinkle in his eye,  the fabric sellers at the Manama Souk, cruising Bokawara 'hood in East Riffa a few more times to enjoy the carnival of affections taking place in carloads full of young Middle Eastern females and males in a parade of attention-getting techniques that will never cease to stop fascinating me, etc.

Yea, I have a lot on my list to take care of before I depart.  The frenzy begins to soak up as much of Bahrain as I can. This has certainly been a pleasant, unexpected stopover on my path... 

Pedal Power: One of the vendors had this lovely little set-up.  The table was full of traditional sweets

This old man was happily working away on his nets

Looking up at a shisha cafe