Welcome family and friends and all those interested in learning more about life in the Middle East-as an expat. We invite you to join us on our mysterious journey, which began in Texas and continues to Saudi Arabia...and now one year later....back to the US! One year of life in Jeddah was enough to write a book. So many good and not so good things were experienced. We write about them here.....
Saudi Arabia does not allow women to drive, by law women are not allowed medical treatment without the permission of her father, husband, or adult son. Manal Al-Sherif discusses the issue with Christian Amanpour on CNN.
If you want to stay up date with her campaign feel free to use favorite social media to do so.
Well if you are in Saudi Arabia the answer may be four or
more based on your experience. Recently we purchased commercial all in one
printer from a well-known distributor in the Kingdom. This is how the receiving
and installation process went.
Day 1- We received our printers in the new office. A
Bangladeshi guy delivered the all in one unit.
Day 2- Another representative came by to make sure the boxes
were delivered. This time a Saudi he looks at three boxes and says Masha-Allah
you have the printers and left.
Day 3- First a gentleman from Philippines comes to un-box
the printers. Hour later another Saudi comes in to plug it in the wall and say
Masha-Allah your printers have power and left.
Day 4- Indian technician comes in to setup the printer as it
is a network printer.
Day 5- The Saudi gentleman from Day 3 comes in to take a
short survey and says Masha-Allah everything is great.
There is a reason why I mentioned the nationalities of all
the people involved here. In the Kingdom you can only hire Saudis or
individuals from North America or Europe for high level positions. Saudis,
other Arabs, and perhaps Indo –Pak nationals for IT related job. But no Saudi
is to be assigned an IT job, which includes excessive work or field work. Delivery
work, janitorial work, or any other work that requires one to sweat have to be
from 3rd world countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Srilanka,
Philippines, or part of Africa.
I understand it was a printer and not a light bulb and the
Saudis were the blonds but you get the point.
Top 5 things that I will not miss (from the United States)
1. Rated "R" commercials, that come on before dark
2. The News, which I can't watch around my kids, because it is inappropriate.
3. The price of gas
5. The cost of medical and dental insurance and the price of prescriptions
The top 5 things that I will miss:
1. My family, friends and co-workers
2. My place of worship
3. Weather below 90 degrees
5. The green grass, trees and flowers
The top 5 things that I do not look forward to in Saudi Arabia:
1. Dust storms
2. Wearing the black abaya out in public, as mandated by the law
3. The constant 100 degree weather, with norms of 110 and lows in the 90's
4. Not having a place of worship, like here in the US
5. Still having to pay back my student loans
The top 5 things that I do look forward to in Saudi Arabia
1. My new job as Curriculum Specialist at the soon to be largest Kindergarten/Early Childhood School in the country
2. Great pay, tax-free!
3. Being able to travel to nearby countries, like Dubai and Egypt
4. Having a driver
5. Having a house maid
Wow-it will be six weeks until our scheduled flight to Saudi Arabia! We still have no VISA's yet, but all is looking positive towards us receiving them soon. My boss though, received her Visa just two days before her flight, back in January. I am supposed to be there before June 5th, but it is out of my control....so all there is to do is wait and be patient, clean the house, take stuff to goodwill and sale furniture. My house is getting very empty. Malik's room has no furniture in it. We sold his bunkbeds today. Tomorrow I have a buyer coming over to look at the couch. I just can't wait to get to Saudi Arabia to see my husband. I miss him so much!
It's been very tough trying to find an apartment without a Realtor or Online listing system. To find an apartment in Saudi Arabia most people will drive around and stop in front of the building they like. They will then ask the maintenance guy if there is an apartment available. If you are lucky he will respond or else then just wave his hand almost like saying please do not waste my time. Here is a video of another apartment I liked but it did not fulfill all my needs.
Here is the first of many apartments that I visited. Finding the perfect apartment in Jeddah is a bit tricky. I had many tactics of how to find available ones. Just let me know if you need advice.
*Update* I did not get this apartment...it was gone the next day!
The second video is of another apartment that I visited. It was on the 5th floor, on a main street and there was not much parking available. *update* We did not get this apartment. It was gone the next day. Tip to Jeddah apartment shoppers. Bring lots of money with you and be prepared to pay a down payment AS SOON as you find a place you like. If you wait a day, like I did, it will most likely be gone!