Katmandu living

the van de Wiel/Schou Hansen family blog

We have finally arrived in Yemen after quite a long journey, not at least for the kids (and I) who have been living out of a suitcase at almost all family members. Coming to think about it, it has only been Martijn and Maki out of our whole immediate family where we have not spent at least one night (and as they live in Hong Kong I think it is understandable that we never got about to visiting them). Anyway, though it has been nice for us to be in Europe and see the whole family over Christmas it has of course also been pretty confusing for the kids and we are therefore also happy that we can now finally see and end to this gypsy life style. Not that these days are not confusing. After leaving Europe we have done much to turn day and night around. First of all we arrived at 6.00 yesterday morning to Dubai. With a time difference of 3 hours it was actually only 3.00 in the morning in our heads so the kids were pretty difficult to get out of the plane. Little did it help that our room was not ready when we arrived to Le Meridian, so we had to sit in the lobby for almost one and a half hour before we could go up and get some rest. We didn’t see much of Dubai – on the suggestion of the hotel we went to a shopping mall that was supposed to have a small fairground. However, it turned out that the fairground was closed to respect the mourning over the death of the ruler of Dubai. We however got around to do a bit of shopping. There was no big differences between Dubai and Mexico in this aspect. We did most of our shopping at Carrefour, which looked almost exactly like the Carrefour where we used to do most of our shopping in Mexico. We managed to buy a couple of electricity transformers, something we have been looking for in Europe for a month now. I guess all it took was to go to a French supermarket in Dubai.

This morning we got up at 4.00, as our plane left from Dubai at 7.00. After a short and uneventful trip we arrived in Yemen. It was like stepping into a totally different world. Already in plane you saw the difference as almost all women were fully covered except for a letterbox size slit to look out through. Arriving at Sana’a International Airport was a bit like arriving a small version of Delhi Airport. The same kind of smells and the same chaos, though much cleaner. From we airport we went directly to the Sheraton Hotel (Liva is saying that we have not arrived in Yemen yet but in Dubai Yemen – I guess she is trying to say that we are still living at this kind of impersonal hotel and that we will only arrive in Yemen when we have a house). Anyway, after a few hours of sleep and waiting for 45 minutes for the driver (which was probably the real introduction to Yemen – there seem to be a lot of waiting going on in this country) we went to Lieke’s office where we got a chance to meet many of Lieke’s colleagues before we went to see the house, and I must say, the pictures does not really do it justice. It is a absolutely perfect house and it is easy to see why Lieke fell in love right away. It has a lot of rooms though the 16 rooms that Lieke has mentioned in discussions with me will have to include both storage and bath rooms. It has a lovely roof top and beautiful views over Old Sana’a. I can’t wait to get down there and start to explore all those alleyways and small streets with markets etc.

The next couple of days will be used to get organized. We will have to buy a fridge and will also have to start finding all the other necessities like Stove, Washing machine and TV, so we can get ready to move in on the 15th when we take over the house. It is right now our plan to buy a few mattresses and camp out the first few days. We are still not sure when we will get our shipment. It is supposed to arrive in the harbor on 15th but before it has been cleared and driven to Sana’a it will probably be at least the 20th .

Anyway it is getting close to 24.00 here in Sana’a so I better stop. I will try to publish this from the lobby (they are supposed to have wireless there) tomorrow sometime.


  1. Anonymous  

    Kære Henrik og Lieke
    Dejligt at høre, at I nu endelig er nær målet. Vi er i gang med den store fødselsdagsweekend for Emilie, 3 x gæster på 3 dage, hyggeligt og lidt hårdt. Vi snakkes/mailes ved.
    Knus fra AM m.fl.

  2. Anonymous  

    Fijn dat jullie gezond aangekomen zijn. Maak er een mooie tijd van.
    Kusjes Mammie en Pappie

  3. Anonymous  

    Happy NewYear to you all!
    Fijn dat de hele familie weer bijeen is. Heel veel lieve groetjes
    Brenda, William Nolan en Sem

  4. Anonymous  

    Hee, wat goed dat jullie nu echt zijn aangekomen en bij elkaar zijn! veel succes de komende tijd met het zoeken naar koelkast e.d. en ik hoop dat jullie snel kunnen intrekken.


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