Sunday, April 30, 2006

The parking experts

I have a vague sense that I’m harshing on everything of late, and I’m going to begin this post by saying that there are tons of things I ABSOLUTELY love about being here. But there’s one thing, probably above all others, that literally bugs me to no end and has been known to get my blood pressure up through the roof.

It’s those guys—those “parking” guys—that are always lying in wait when you go down to Fuheis to have a nice, leisurely meal at Zuwwadeh. What their general purpose is, I don’t know, except to hang out on the street, open your door for you, get in front of your car and tell you how to park, how to drive away and anything else you have no need for. And then, for barging in front of you and busting into your day for no reason, they expect some kind of tip.

Yes, it is a huge effort for us to open the door and when they’re not around (as in, most of the time) we generally just abandon our car on the street because we have no clue how to park. In fact, driving is so much of a challenge for us that we often just feel overwhelmed by the task and consult random driving experts who are walking around on the street.

To be fair, I understand they probably weren’t making much of decent living before taking on this “job,” but their self-appointed consulting services honestly don’t seem to be needed. And the other thing that baffles me is that as of a few years ago, they’ve somehow become legitimized. They now wear fluorescent vests and seem to walk with a new, self-important swagger. I’m sure they’re nice guys at heart, but out on the street, they're as annoying as it gets.

Check out the picture of our parking consultant lending his expertise to securing Samer’s door. These guys sure are adept.

We also took a big bunch of pictures from our lunch at Zuwwadeh for all those clamoring for pictures from Jordan—plus we’ve got pictures of other stuff, like Easter egg hunts and our relative Tareef’s pre-wedding excitement. You can see them here at Flickr.

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