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Sunday, August 27, 2006
Random conversation

The kids next door were role playing the other day in the backyard. L is 4, going on 5, and her brother S is 3. They're highly intelligent, quick thinking kids who are perfectly bilingual in Arabic and English, with a vocabulary so rich that it's astounding. It's too bad they're not being introduced to a third language at this age; at the rate their cognitive development is growing it'd be easy for them to absorb a third one.

So they're role playing in the backyard...L is the mother and S is the son. They must have been reenacting tea time because she was offering him sugar and treats.

L: 3ayez sugar? (You want sugar?)
S: Yes, I want sukar (I want sugar).
L: Here you go S. S, S, what am I doing now?
S: I don't know L, what are you doing?
L: I'm drinking sagayer right now.
S: Ana kaman. Ana kaman am drinking sagayer.

There's no way I can translate that to an English speaker in a way to make it comprehensible, and it's been such a long week that I won't even try right now.

When I was younger and forbidden from wearing makeup, I cried to my grandmother once that it was unfair.

"Ana 3ayza albess rouge kaman!" I screamed through my tears. She immediately laughed at me, which made me cry even more.

But nothing was funnier than my cousin H who, in a conversation with my father, translated "old man" to "ragel adeem".
Thoughts shared by Carmen at 8:06 PM
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Who: Carmen

xx-something egyptia-yorker who's spent over half her life stuck in two worlds not of her own making. unable and unwilling to fully embrace one identity over the other, she created (is trying to create) her own place in the world where people love each other unconditionally, irrespective of artificial boundaries, and where dancing merengue is as necessary to life as breathing air.

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