Well, we're back in Libya (in fact, we've been back since Sunday, but things were way too busy at work to post, and at home we were either playing with the animals or trying to sleep off the jetlag). I am delighted to report that cats, dogs, and house were all in excellent condition and everything went really well while we were away, it puts my mind at ease about future trips we'll have to make. Between our wonderful watchman, Francis, and some of our expat colleagues, the cats and dogs all stayed healthy and happy in our absence. They did have the good manners to act like they'd missed us, though, and we know we certainly missed them!
Anyway, by popular demand, here are some pictures of the house. A little background: the landowner is Libyan, and he had the house built and leases it to our company. Our company then assigns villas to employees based on a number of factors (including seniority/job title, family size, pets, etc.). ALL of the villas for expats are large and some are absolutely enormous. They come furnished with the basics, but that leaves a lot of room for personal stuff (literally! we finally got our sea shipment container of our things from Houston and the place is still not exactly full). Because DH is a manager and I am a geophysicist (which is unusual, most couples only have one working spouse), we were assigned this collassal place even though we don't have kids. And because the HR director - who makes the housing assignments - also happens to be an animal lover, especially dogs, she earmarked this place for us because she thought Toby and Chamois would like the big yard and the swimming pool. How right she was...
Toby says, "Come on in!"
Chamois says, "What are you waiting for?"
The entry way and staircase, the cats like to walk around on the railings and give me heart attacks.
Pool table (we brought it in our shipment),
Living room (corporate furniture but not bad, I'm not posting pictures of the dining room because I think the corporate furniture that was selected is particularly hideous),
Chamois says, "Can I phuleeeeeezeeee get on the bed?"
(Don't believe that pathetic look, she sleeps up there ALL the time.)
We call this "The Den of Iniquity". Don't ask why they built in a granite wet bar in an officially dry country.
(BTW, the furniture in here is not corporate)
This is what they call the "basement". It's not subterranean, but it's just a giant storage room (approx. 60' x 22' or the entire width of the house). 2/3 of it is for human use, my ballet studio which we built, my Pilates machine, and other exercise equipment:
The other 1/3 is Toby's and Chamois's room when we're not home (and when they're not playing, I mean helping Francis in the yard during the day).
Here they're hiding behind the fence:
Toby says, "I like my room!"
Chamois says, "It's OK, but I prefer the bedroom upstairs."
Back of the house,
Chamois in the pool,
Toby just out of the pool,
View of the back yard from the roof:
"Olive wood is delicious!"
Me and Francis (taken on a camera phone, apologies for the poor quality):
Toby and Chamois say, "Thanks for the virtual visit! Come and play any time!"
Sorry if it took a long time to load all the pictures. But you (or some of you anyway) DID ask! Anyway, at first I was pretty overwhelmed by the place, and I don't expect that when we leave Libya and return to the States we'll ever have a place that even comes close to this one. We've been here just over 3 months, and I still have to pinch myself that we live in a house like this. It goes a long way for making up for living in a place that can always be described as "challenging" (and sometimes in terms that are a whole lot less flattering!). But I'm coming to really like it, and of course, all of the animals have absolutely LOVED the place from Day 1, which is very important.
It's an adventure.
Toby and Chamois say: GO STEELERS!
What a unique home for you and your family! The furkids look very comfortable....I love the pic of Chamois resting her head on the bed. That brought a smile and a laugh.
How long will you be staying in Libya? (maybe I missed that post). Neat rooftop pic.
Thanks for sharing!
Wow -- the house is absolutely amazing and not to mention HUGE!
That pool is to die for. Lucky, lucky dogs.
Wow, it sure is a lovely home!!
Thanks for sharing the photos. It is an amazing house ... and looks like you have all settled in well.
I'm curious, what have you found to be your biggest challenges living there?
Wow Ursula! I just would die for a pool and and exercise room like that! Those are my favorite aspects for the place.
Must be a good feeling to know you have people like Francis you can trust to care for your pup-pups and kitties.
Looks like you and your DH are having a wonderfull adventure. Enjoy it! Tell your four-legged family members how lucky they are.
Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.
Thanks for sharing Ursula. Take care.
The house is fabulous. It must be a wonderful adventure for you & your husband. The dogs look so happy. But then, who wouldn't be with a pool like that & a hugh play room for them. Thanks for sharing with us.
Wow. That house is amazing. Hope all of you enjoy your stay. I know I would.