I called my friend Chadi last night to organise what time to meet today. He asked me what I was planning for the evening and I responded by saying that I was just going to watch some tv and go to bed. Nope, he wasn't having a bar of that, and jumped in his car to come and get me.
Christmas Eve in his village (which is only about 20 mins from Tripoli) is a big deal. Families wrap the presents for the children and drop them off at the local sports club, where a team of teenage Santas await. They then bundle into vans and go off to deliver the pressies to the kiddies.
The sounds of santa bells could be heard echoing up and down the streets, and there was a definite Christmas spirit in the air.
Chadi then took me to his sister's house, where they welcomed me with open arms and we gorged on all sorts of wonderful delights. I got home at about 11pm and my face was sore from smiling...what a lovely night!
This morning, I unwrapped the two presents Oli had kindly given me, as he knew I didn't have anything to open, and I delighted in their kitchness. And now, my little backpack is ready to go...5 days await in exciting Egypt!