I can tell that Miriam and Magdalena have finally reconciled themselves to some of Egypt's idiosyncrasies. They no longer startle at cars honking non-stop, or blanch at the sight of copious amounts of garbage on the street. Miriam knows to avoid stepping in puddles of foul-smelling mystery water that collect on the roads here, and the roads are where we walk since there aren't functional sidewalks. Miriam is getting really good at walking through traffic here. Almost too good - she's not afraid of the crazy driving habits anymore and she sometimes prompts me when there's a break in traffic long enough for us to cross the street.
Yesterday as we were climbing the stairs to our apartment, she kindly asked me if I could walk ahead with her "just in case there are any street kitties or dogs up there."
nargileh when she told me, "sometimes I see people smoking a little pool with plates stacked on top and a little string coming out."
But the way it really sunk in that my kids have adjusted to Cairo was yesterday when we went to McDonald's. The last time we were there was back in May, just a few days after arriving here. The girls took one look at the kids' play area there and were absolutely not interested. It was all a filthy mass of cracked plastic, exposed bolts, and empty, disheveled ball pits to them.
That was two months ago. Yesterday, they BEGGED me to go play there once they saw it and they played happily for a long time. When it was time to go, Miriam told me she wanted to go play there "not every day, but almost." Even Magdalena had been brave enough to go in the faded plastic labyrinth, which was mildly terrifying for me. I couldn't see the inside of it so I had no idea how or if she would get through. But Miriam went with her and they both emerged down the exit slide eventually.
I just hope there wasn't a dead cat in there or anything. Not that it would have phased them at this point.