The lovely Sabah

Here’s Sabah, my cleaning lady. She does her washing at my apartment and waits for it to dry, watching TV and drinking tea, apparently. I think she also washes my clothes? I’m not quite sure. But she already calls me ‘habibi’ (equiv: hmmm, darling?), and for that I think she’s fantastic. Or she was in public relations in a previous life.

Weirdness… this morning, a man came to take away my rubbish, and my doorbell just rang and there was an old guy in a blue gelibyya who is cleaning shoes…

About the author

Fear is found on a creaking glacier in the Caucasus mountains and joy is encapsulated in the perfect Shanghai dumpling. And while I love a $500-a-night hotel room (who doesn’t?), sometimes the best stories are found in a $20 guesthouse. With an eye always out for good markets and great street eats, I write the travel news and features for the Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne’s The Age newspapers, and features for whoever else asks. I have a particular soft spot for the wilds of the Middle East, scarves and carpets. My articles and photographs have been published in a range of consumer magazines and newspapers in Australia and abroad.

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