Quick trip across the Causeway yesterday to get DH a pair of sneakers to wear on our upcoming trip, because the ones I got for him at Rashid Mall last week, in his opinion, looked too much "like girl's shoes." [Ahh, no. They did not. But they were all white - with no navy or black or grey - which, I guess, is the difference between shoes that are for men - some color on them - versus all white, which are for women. Okey dokey. Will not make that mistake again, will I!] So we left yesterday at eleven. Trip over to Bahrain was uneventful. Went to Seef Mall where we went to Olympia Sports to find sneakers. Oh thank goodness for that store. Twice now, in six years, we've found size 13 sneakers for DH. Then we went to Marks & Spencer where we found a couple of pairs of shorts for him and a couple of shirts. In and out in an hour or so. With much success. That is a good thing. DH can barely handle shopping for that long.
We left the mall and went to Trader Vic's for lunch. Lunch was relatively uneventful - the way you want for it to be - and of course I can't take photos in the lounge area, or I would, just to show how many men were there in their full ethnic wear drinking beer and wine. Remember a few months ago I posted about the man who was sitting at the table drinking an entire bottle of wine, playing on his mobile the entire time, and fingering his "prayer beads" [it is somewhere in the archives, here]? He was there yesterday. He must be a regular. All of the workers at Trader Vic's know him by name to make sure they say hello. Perhaps he is a good tipper [?]. DH and I had a couple of chilly beverages with our lunch before leaving to go to "the pork store," and as we were exiting I hit the Ladies' Room. Nasty. Just nasty. Used to be so clean and tidy all the time. Not anymore. Two of the three sinks had missing handles for the water taps - so only had cold water; there was wet toilet paper in every stall - on the floors... I didn't have my pocketbook with me - DH was holding it for me - and it had the camera in it, so I didn't get pictures.
When we got to "the pork store" we learned that it is no longer carrying any pork products from the United States. They have been banned. The whole swine flu thing - even though you can't catch swine flu from pork. They are carrying pork products from the UK, though. The bacon just was too fatty - we didn't get any. And, DH decided that he didn't want the sausage that was there - it hasn't been particularly tasty in the past, so why spend the money. We did bring back a couple kilos of ham, though, and some "parma-ham" tortellini. I had the man at the counter open the pasta package and re-wrap it with brown paper so that it didn't say "ham," and the ham that we brought back says, "turkey-ham." We also got 10 kilograms of GOOD butter - twenty half-kilogram blocks of it, eight boxes of Velveeta cheese [the stuff lasts forever it has so many chemicals in it - can't really be considered cheese, but there is nothing better than Velveeta cheese sauce on broccoli!], the last two packages of English muffins [I would have purchased more if they would have had them]. It was a successful trip to "the pork store" even though we didn't get much pork.
Before we left I ran to the ladies room. There was a man sitting in a chair in the open closet right inside the entrance to the restrooms. Next to him were his "tools." Bucket, mop, towels, spray bottles of cleanser. This is a restroom that in the past has not been particularly clean, but now? Oh my gosh. The man in charge is doing a most excellent job. The place was immaculate! [And, yes, as I was leaving I thanked him for doing just a good job - he had no clue what I was saying - and I can't tell you where he is from - Bangledesh? India? Somewhere. Imported worker.]
This sign is new:
The two stalls were both spic 'n span clean - even smelled clean! Toilet tissue in both of the stalls, no trash anywhere to be seen AND a DRY floor:
Even plenty of paper-towels to dry your hands after washing... Big plus: the soap dispenser was full!
Cleanest bathroom I have visited in Bahrain!
How sad is it that I am taking pictures of Ladies' Rooms in the middle east?