We just started our Eid vacation (Muslim holiday) here in Kuwait, so I have the entire next week off! I decided not to travel this time, since I've been out of the country five times in the past 6 months. I'm using the time to clean (loooong overdue!), rest, read, and think about the future. After cleaning out most of my fridge tonight, I decided that a trip across the street to my favorite chicken guys was in order. The chicken guys are basically my alternative to cooking my own food. Their little rotisserie chicken restaurant is my favorite local hangout. All the guys that work there are Syrian, and they know me well. I've probably been by their restaurant three times a week every week for the past year! None of them really speak English, but they all come out to say hello and I sometimes go inside to drink tea and chat. We laugh a lot since our conversations are basically one-sided monologues. I jabber in English...and get a lot of blank stares and laughter. They respond by jabbering in Arabic. I understand a bit, but generally just stare back and laugh. And so it goes. Tonight, I stayed in my car waiting for my hummus, falafel sandwich, and fries (it took three guys to understand what fries were). One of the guys came over to the car to chat...it went something like this:
Chicken guy: Salaam Aleykum (hello!). You no drink syrian whiskey inside? (gesture to restaurant.
Me: Syrian whiskey?
Chicken guy: [laughter]. This Kuwait. No have whiskey. Syrian whiskey = chai tea.
Me: [laughter]. This Kuwait. No have alcohol. Not good for foreigners, but oh well. But thank you for tea. Inshallah (god willing), tomorrow.
Chicken guy: [gesture to my apartment building across the street]. You have whiskey inside? You bring whiskey, I drink?
Me: [laughter]. No have whiskey. Alcohol illegal. No whiskey. Sorry.
Chicken guy: You get whiskey from american embassy? You bring, I drink?
Me: No, I can't get whiskey at american embassy. No have whiskey. No have alcohol. Sorry.
Chicken guy: You take me, we drink whiskey.
Me: [laughter]. No, sorry. No have whiskey. You go Syria to drink whiskey.
Chicken guy: Can get sadiki (bathtub made vodka] in Kuwait. Cost a lot. You buy, we drink?
Me: No. Sadiki very bad for stomach. Sorry. No can drink alcohol in Kuwait.
Chicken guy: You have husband?
Me: No. No husband.
Chicken guy: [incredulous laughter]. No have husband? No have baby? No baby? You no want husband and baby?
Me: [uncomfortable laughter]. No have husband. No have baby. Maybe inshallah someday in the future.
Chicken guy: You have boyfriend?
Me: Yes, have boyfriend (sorry, sometimes you gotta lie in these situations...it's a safety thing). Have very nice American boyfriend.
Chicken guy: Boyfriend drive green car?
Me: [confused laughter]. No, boyfriend no drive green car. Boyfriend no come to this restaurant.
Chicken guy: You have American boyfriend. So he in Kuwait?
Me: Yes. He in Kuwait. Is my food ready? Must bring food to American boyfriend.
Chicken guy: [disappointed laughter]. Ok, ok. I go get food. You bring me whiskey!
Most of this was in a combo of English and Arabic. He said a lot more that I didn't catch, but I'm ok with that. Never a dull moment in Kuwait!