I've mentioned a few times in this blog that Jeff and I have been preparing to go to the Marine Ball, to be held tonight in Zamalek. Well, it turns out that we won't be going after all.
Jeff is sick. He was off work on Tuesday for Veterans Day, and he took Wednesday and Thursday as well, just because he has the leave and he was ready for a break. It was the perfect opportunity to make it a 5-day weekend. But on Tuesday, he suddenly got very tired, just half an hour before we were to leave for life group. He took a short nap and then felt well enough to go not only to life group, but then to play basketball afterward. On Wednesday, he started complaining of a mild case of . . . digestive problems . . . as well as achy muscles. Due to some medicine he took, the digestive issues were better yesterday, although he was still tired and achy. He was able to go to church last night with no real problem, other than being tired enough to gratefully accept a friend's offer of a ride home rather than walking like we normally would have done. But this morning, when he woke up around 10 (late even for him nowadays), he was miserable. He was still exhausted, his muscles and joints ached, and he had more . . . digestive problems, opposite the problems he had on Wednesday.
So we discussed it and decided to call some friends of ours. These friends go to the Marine Ball every year but were unable to get tickets this year. We had offered to get tickets for them when we got ours--embassy families were allowed to buy one pair of tickets for themselves plus one extra pair before they were offered for sale to the larger community--but these friends felt bad about the group that they normally go with, so they decided to wait and try to get enough for their whole group. That didn't work out, so they ended up regretting their decision not to take us up on our offer. But now they're going after all . . . I hope they like the steak dinner option, since that's what they're having . . . (when purchasing tickets, you had to pick your main course for dinner: a choice of steak, fish, maybe something else, and a vegetarian option).
On the one hand, it's disappointing not to be able to go to the ball this year. On the other hand, I'm actually a little relieved. I've been ambivalent about going.
On the one hand, it's a way to support the Marines, and everyone says it's a really good time.
On the other hand, I was really nervous about my appearance. I kind of felt like a little girl getting ready to play dress-up. The seamstress added a detail to my dress (the picture I showed her wasn't that great; it looked like the detail was there even though it wasn't) that I wasn't sure of at first and have decided that I don't like so much, and the straps I had her add take away from the dress more than I thought they would. They made it feel more like my junior bridesmaid's dress rather than the grown-up bridesmaid's dress. As of this morning, I still hadn't decided what to do with my hair--wearing it down seemed too casual and young, but I can't put it up well myself and I haven't done the research to find a good hairdresser here yet. Also, I usually don't wear makeup, because I hate how it feels on my face, and I haven't even gotten around to checking to see if my makeup (1) made it here from the States rather than being thrown away there and (2) is still in date and not clumpy or anything. So I was feeling a bit insecure about my appearance and I'm relieved to not be worrying about whether or not I'm going to make a fool of myself and embarrass Jeff (not that he'd ever tell me if I embarrassed him).
We've agreed with our friends that we'll go to the ball together next year--at least we will if the wehesh* choice of Obama doesn't cost their company their contract. By then, I'll make sure to have taken care of the makeup and hair details. I'll also have more time to decide on a dress style and be certain that I'll feel comfortable in it.
As for Jeff, he's sleeping on the couch now. He said that there was a bug going around the office not too long ago, and he thinks he got it, but his body wouldn't give in until he felt free to relax. If he isn't better by Sunday, he's going to visit the medical unit at the embassy.
*I love being able to use the word wehesh. It's really just the Arabic (masculine) word for bad--the feminine form is wehsha, and the plural is wehshiin--but it somehow seems to fit the meaning better than the English word.