Following up on a blog post done last month from Kelly, who recently relocated to Saudi Arabia. She tells us what she has been up too and what life in the desert is like:
“Yes we are still surviving in this desert heat! Temps reaching a high of 46 Degrees and still expected to hit the 50’s. I called this Saudi Blog “still pinching myself” as I still wake up some days and can’t believe I’m living here. I still find the prayer times daunting but at least the kids are starting to get used it now.
We’ve made a great social circle (other South African folk) and if it wasn’t for them I think i would totally be hating this place and be bored out of my mind! The South Africans stick together and it warms my heart to see such good friendships forming among us. The usual “braai” and “kuier” happens here regularly and you are on call for those spur of the moment invites. Most of our friends also stay in outside compounds and we all seem to live a peaceful life, living among the Saudi folk. In fact, I think we are their source of entertainment with music blaring, huge laughs and the smell of “braai” lingering in the air in this extremely conservative, strict country. Yes, at anytime, at any moment the religious police otherwise known as the Muttawa could arrive in full force to lock us up but touch wood it has never happened.
Not being allowed to drive is starting to damp on my independence and having to rely on drivers and my husband proves to be somewhat irritating, as any impulse shopping simply can not take place. Ramadan is fast approaching , that is the most religious time here in the Middle East, things are on a huge go slow and many pilgrims start making their way towards Mecca for their annual pilgrimage. Us as non Muslims and Westerners will never be allowed to see the beauty of this “Mecca” ,not like I had plans to go there anyway.
Overall so far (after a month and a bit) Saudi is not too bad BUT…….you don’t come live here for the scenery or anything beautiful to look at. It’s not a cosmopolitan Dubai, it’s a dirty, dusty place filled with black dressed woman, traditional dressed men, imports, big American cars, same coloured sandy brown Arabian homes and sometimes a blue sky. I still have not been treated in any horrible or disrespectful way and have been shown nothing but kindness and helpfulness by many. Being a mom is a trump card here especially with my fair haired babies with blue eyes, not missing home yet but its still early days.
Like I said in the beginning I’m still pinching myself as I cannot believe of all places in the world I live here but I’m not going to sulk or whinge its my mission to make the most of it!”
Finally I see camels!