I am Like a Kid in a Candy Store; Uninhibited Defined and Illustrated: Inability to Untie Knot Brings a New Friend and Great Joy; Emails Sent Back ‘Home’: Surveillance Spells Safety; Twenty Staff Members from Twenty Countries; Front Tooth Gap Found in Middle East Royalty; Photograph of Me In Sunglasses and Me and a Member of the 12%

Like a kid in a candy store. That expression came suddenly to mind when I thought of the happiness and joy I feel at this hotel at the present moment. Googled it and, yet again, it was the perfect idiom. If you are like a kid in a candy store in a particular situation, you do whatever you want and do not restrict your behaviour. Note: The usual British expression is like a child in a sweet shop.
Another definition: So excited about one’s surroundings that one acts in a childlike or silly way. Primarily heard in US.

I do laugh and joke with the staff constantly but it is not exactly childlike or silly, another way to say it: I am most uninhibited. Again, a perfect word: expressing one’s feelings or thoughts unselfconsciously and without restraint. There are a bevy of synonyms: unrepressed, liberated, unconstrained, unselfconscious, free and easy, relaxed, informal, open, outgoing, extrovert, candid, outspoken, frank, forthright, spontaneous, instinctive, shameless; upfront. Antonyms; inhibited, reserved, repressed.

So this was an upfront, liberated, free and easy, informal conversation that took place yesterday with a most helpful man at the concierge desk.
Me: Could you please tell me where the nearest drug store is?
He: Madam, it is five minutes away but you can call and they will deliver your prescription medications.
Me: I brought all of my medications with me. I just need contraceptives.

Much laughter between the two of us because, obviously, I was being unrepressed and liberated and acting like an extrovert. I am 78 years old, unmarried, and following the faith. There would be absolutely no way that I would have any need whatsoever for contraceptives. But I am so very comfortable in this surroundings that I can be rather shameless. In the United States they would probably call the Central Marin Police Department, who would haul me off in handcuffs, take me to Marin Crisis Unit on a 5150 hold because I was a danger to myself or just nuts.
Instead there was much laughter and I made the day of the concierge, yet again.

Then there was another incident. I was relaxing in my sumptuous room, put on a flowing garment that my mother had sewn for me fifty-five years ago – made from the finest Swiss cotton. (A photograph will be appended to this blog). I was going downstairs for lunch (delicious French onion soup), putting on suitable clothes. However, the tie back was knotted, could not untie it. Resourcefully placed my unbuttoned abaya over all and went downstairs to seek assistance. The security guard located outside the elevators could not help, he directed me to the concierge for scissors.
He: Hello again! No scissors are not the answer. I know someone who is excellent at untying knots.
Me: Oh, that would be most helpful. I treasure this garment.

Nayli arrived immediately, immediately and surely untied the knot.
Me: I am so grateful, Which country are you from? How old are you?
She: I am from Kazakhstan. I am eighteen.
Me: Oh my goodness! I am so proud of you – here so young to improve your fortunes.

By the way: Ethnic Kazakhs are predominantly Sunni Muslims of the Hanafi school. There are also small number of Shias. Geographically speaking, Kazakhstan is the northernmost Muslim-majority country in the world.

She and I immediately identified with one another, laughing and joking with enthusiasm and I told her a couple of secrets about myself and my journey to Dubai,
Me: I am here to the end of the month but while I am here I will apply for a visa – I brought letters of qualifications with me. Then I will live here.
She: I am SO happy! We can hang out together!
Me: It would be so much fun. We will!

It will work on may levels. Muslims are to limit their friendships to other Muslims. But friendships with Muslims in Marin County is an impossibility task as there are very few Muslims in Marin – I have not met any. Everyone needs friends, particularly an old woman who lives alone. What is the solution? It is obvious, come to Dubai and live. I have much more in common with the brave young women from foreign countries than I do with the emotionally impoverished hopeless folk who surround me at Tam Ridge apartments in Corte Madera.

Speaking of back there, I am emailing two men – both entirely different from one another, in age, rank and serial number (no idea where the expression comes from) Here are excerpts from the emails.

I just heard from Steve the Mover. The fab guy that moved me into Tam Ridge in December. He does both packing and moving so I can get him soon after I return on the 31st and get outta there without any effort. He is SO good and he super likes me. (Not that way, hahahah) Everything going great. I am planning to get a long term rate at this hotel and live here when I come back. Will speak to the woman on Monday. This hotel is HUGE – has something like 1600 rooms but is so well designed that it seems rather intimate. I had a massage yesterday, and it was the best ever – the woman so caring. I told her that she was ‘made” to be a masseuse. It made her so happy!
I have become the ‘mother’ to the young men and women working here from afar, the staff include people from 46 different countries – diversity in all of its glory is practiced here and it works out perfectly, the opposite of all white Marin. I just absolutely know that you are happy for me. Please say hi to your staff for me.
Then another email to this same individual. “Interesting to see the notice about abuse of pool hours at Tam Ridge, it made me glad I was here needless to say! Here there is a feeling of such safety and courtesy – everyone seems to treasure everyone. In marked contrast to conditions at Tam Ridge. I expanded my Royalty connections as recounted on blog. He was such a sweet man. Two proposals of marriage to date. An Egyptian and an Emeriti -they only 12% of population these days. All this and I have been here only two full days. Not bad for an old broad. I shall take a pill and go back to sleep. Fell into a slumber after massage. Here pool hours are 7 am until 11 pm – perhaps creeps at Tam Ridge who violate the rules should move here as the pool hours are longer . 🤣 hahaha Alexis”

The email to the other individual contained much the same material, although this was added. “It is rather eerie – looked out the window and saw a camera on adjoining roof. Surveillance in this country is extensive, one’s every move is filmed with security cameras. But with face masks it is impossible for anyone watching these ‘movies’ to know what is being said. So it is rather fun to swear under one’s breath while maintaining a friendly posture. This surveillance keeps everyone safe – the right to privacy so adored by the United States is outmoded, impossible and puts everyone at risk. Young women working here, discuss their feelings of utter safety with such relief, different from the countries that they came from.”

Yesterday, I walked about with a notebook in hand asking staff which country they came from. I learned so much about each of them. Twenty different countries were represented, some of which are unknown to me, although I have readers in some of these far off lands. Finally I found someone from Pakistan – statistically knew that they were well represented but did not locate any individuals who said that had been there home. Finally found a man, and he was handsome. Hahahaha

So I chat with everyone and they chat back. Two staff members in the French restaurant (that I love) ran off to complete their chores, but said:
They: If I have time I will come back to you.
Me: What a sweet thing to say, It makes me feel valued.
Nd you know what? They did come back to me. Not like those many, many people in the USA.

In conclusion. I gazed at the photograph of the Sultan of Saudi Arabia and myself and remembered this conversation.
Me: Oh my goodness! You have a gap between your two front teeth, just like I do!
He: (smiled broadly)

But what is even stranger, more supernatural and all, is that the Father Emir of Qatar also has a gap between his two front teeth These Royals and Alexis and our gaps.
Type Mind the Gap in the search engine of this blog and you can read the story about my gap.

Two photographs – one of me clad in the garment sewn by my mother with new sun glasses from See Saw Seen in San Francisco (very chic) and the other of me with one of the 12% – a darling man who remembers me most fondly from my visit in January of 2020.

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