The Middle East As an American

Continue of Dubai

Before we moved to Dubai as I said many people thought we were crazy and that we wouldn’t be safe.  They claimed that we wouldn’t be able to attend church.  That I would have to be completely covered up when dressed, i.e. no shorts whatsoever.

Well I can tell you that there are plenty of churches to attend in Dubai, and we did go.  We were no harassed in anyway because we were Christian.  In fact, along the street to the many churches you found people selling food.  It was cheap and good, we bought some and had a rather nice meal on the walk.

So all those claims that you can’t be a Christian and go to church were simply propaganda, and lies.  Imagine that!  Western propaganda at its best trying to create fear among the population.  They’ve done a great job of it.

Moving onto shorts, you know what I wore them outside.  They weren’t short-shorts, but ones that came down to my knees.  They were fine and no one said anything to me about them.  Again another lie that is told about this part of the world.

My husband and I are the type of couple who like to hold hands when we walk.  Well this was one thing we could not do in the country, unless we wanted to possibly be fined.

So we still held hands from time to time and didn’t get caught.  Yes we were lucky.  But honestly, with everything we enjoyed was well worth the one thing we were not able to do.

Next time I’ll talk about our Visa renewal trips, fun times, and people we met along the way.  Possibly a few embarrassing times as well.  Along with our search for a place to live in a very expensive country.

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Life as an American in the Middle East

Moving forward a bit from Dubai.  Next blog I’ll go back to that story.  Unfortunately, the same night as that blog I had a stroke.  This has made it very difficult to type.  The left side of my body has become weakened.  My typing speed is down from 120 words per minute to possibly 20 to 30 with many mistakes.

So I had my second ever visit to an Egyptian hospital.  The first time was when I was coughing up blood.  Yes, if I’m sick I go all out!

This will be a short entry.  As I get better I will add in many more adventures.  I have a ton from Dubai, and even more from Egypt.  However, for now this was more therapy, addled with frustration.

Cheers to everyone and remember we are never promised tomorrow!  Please be patient in the following week with me.  I do have a lot of information to share.  It will allow you to see how life really is in the Middle East for two middle-aged Americans.

Life as an American in the Middle East

Three years ago we were sitting in our small apartment in Tampa, Florida.  We were discussing our upcoming trip out of the country.  It was a huge step, and one that we were nervous about, just as much as excited.

Our first stop, and we hoped it to be a lucrative one, was Dubai.  Yes Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates.  When we began letting friends and family know of our plans we heard all the same comments, in a varied manner.

“You’re moving to the Middle East?  Are you crazy?”  “That’s a Muslim country, it will be very dangerous for you as Christians.  Are you crazy?”  “You’ll be beheaded.  Are you crazy?”

As you can tell there was an underlying theme to every comment and question.  “You’ll be in danger and not safe.  Oh and are you crazy?”  Now I’ll be the first to admit that, yes I am indeed a bit crazy.  Perhaps even more so than I’ll admit at times.  However, I wasn’t put off by the questions and comments.  I’ve done some research, and even talked to several people who already lived in that part of the world.

I’ve made friends with a few and they were extremely nice people.  Plus we had a friend connect us with another friend, who resided in the same area.  He had offered to help us when we arrived.  Hey this was great news!  So with hopes in our minds we trudged on.

I did read several things on the internet as well.  I saw more of the same comments about how strict their laws were in the UAE.  However, we are both law-abiding citizens, so that didn’t worry us.  We aren’t the kind that goes out to a bar and causes a bar fight. Even though  had also read that you couldn’t find bars or alcohol in the our soon to be new home.

In the posts that follow, I will share with you the good, bad and ugly of the places we’ve visited.  It won’t all be in one quick little post.  No, I have three years of living to share.  Not only from my perspective, but from my husbands as well.  We both had some of the best experiences, some tough times and even sadness.

Now first off let me tell you I am crappy at planning the timing of events at times.  This being said, I had booked our flight for July.  I didn’t think about it being the hottest, or one of the hottest months.  I didn’t consider that fact that we would be arriving in the middle of Ramadan either.

Ramadan is a Holy Month for the Muslims.  They fast all day long, that means no water, no eating, no smoking, etc.  We didn’t have to do the fast, we are not Muslim.  Though, we had tried the fasting with our friend in the states once.  We both failed miserably.

So we arrive and we are respectful people.  This means that we would not eat or drink outside during the day.  Yes in the middle of July, in hot Dubai!  Brilliant job Christy on the flight choice!

Do you know how hot it is in Dubai, and how much you sweat?  A lot, and you get extremely thirsty if you are out exploring.  Could we have waited until later in the day?  Yes, we could have.  Did we?  Not right away, after the first day out in the heat, we learned.

That first day though we were walking in the heat and I was really hot.  We found a building that had little shops in it, and air conditioning.  Oh joy!  I was so happy, and I saw a store.  I bought some water and was going to go out of sight to drink it.  Remember it is about respecting people.

The cashier looked at me and told me to go to the back of the store.  He could see how much I needed the water.  I thanked him and went in the back out of sight of everyone.  It was a nice gesture by him, especially since he was fasting.

Like I said that day we learned to wait until later in the day to go out.

Next time I’ll talk about our other adventures in Dubai.  Hitting on the taxi driver who seemed to stalk us every time we went out.  The wonderful times, and some of the learning experiences of how to rent a place, and what to look for.

It was a fun time in Dubai, we met many people who were fantastic.  We met some who tried to rip us off, and still we met some life-long friends as well.  Tune in next time for our next adventure!

Oh and one more note, “Ana magnoona!” I am crazy in Arabic!

 

Unknown title

Well when I begin to write at times I just have no idea what will come to mind, thus my unknown title!  Personally been sick for several days now, guess there is some sort of bug going around here in Tampa, thanks for finding me, you little bastard.  I hate being sick, I’m such a whiner I bug the hell out of myself!

Thankfully my husband is sweet and deals with me quite well when I’m like this.  However, I wanted to stick with my attempt at continuing to write on my blog on a somewhat consistent basis, so here I am not making much sense at all.

Is there anything that bugs me?  Yes bullying.  The reason this comes to mind is the story that happened today with the kids being stabbed at Franklin Regional high school in PA.  If stories are correct the kid who did the stabbing was someone who’d been bullied quite a bit.  Of course the kid will get into trouble now, but what about the bullies who basically started the ball rolling?  Shouldn’t they have to answer to some of this?  I think they should, bullying really isn’t handled very well in many cases, and that should change.

But when you look at the things that are done to bullies, it really pales in comparison to what would be smart to do.  Perhaps the laws on this type of problem should be reconsidered, if there are any laws out there to begin with.  Yes I’ve not really looked into it, again I’m sick and am just typing, not researching information.

What are your feelings on bullying?  What should be done to bullies if the person who’s been bullied does something like this stabbing or a something else?  Let me know, I’m interested to hear.

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Modesty in Public, what happened to it?

Modesty in Public, what happened to it?

See the girl in the picture, what is she wearing???

The Phone Call

My now husband was walking into Walmart and the payphone was ringing in the entry way.  As you can tell this is a while ago, since phones are no longer in the entry when you go into stores.  So he picks it up, and hears, “Is this so and so collections?”  He replies, “Yes, yes it is, how may I help you?”  The person on the other side went off, apparently he owed money to a company, they sent him a letter, and also called neighbors and left messages for him, so that he would pay his bill.  He was not happy at all about this, but he was avoiding calling to pay his bill.  Obviously he dialed incorrectly, getting this Walmart location instead.  The guy began screaming at the top of his lungs, threatening legal action, and making physical threats.

My husbands reply was, “Sir you need to calm down, take a deep breath, take off the dress, grow a set of balls, and pay your fucking bill.”  (Can you imagine actually hearing this from someone you had called to talk about a bill, I mean not at all)!

He then screamed going irate, demanding to speak to a supervisor.  In which my husband replied, “He’s currently snorting lines of cocaine on the ass of a hooker, in the men’s bathroom on the second floor.  Can I take a message?”

The guy hung up.  I wonder when or if he ever realized he got the wrong number.  

The very first time I heard this story, I cried I was laughing so hard, and still to this day, it makes me laugh.  

Cat Bathing Day

Cat Bathing Day

Nothing says fun like the day you give your cat a bath. Thankfully our cat has no claws, so at least we don’t have to suffer from the scratches that a lot of other cat owners do. However, look at that face, this is thankfully after she’s forgiven her humans for the bath. But if you see the slight scrunching of the eyes, this indicates that she is still a bit pissed, trying to figure out, are you giving me another bath? Explicit words form in her mind, and with our cat, she swears she can speak human. Since I’m trying to keep this at least PG rated today, I can not state the words that come out of her mouth as meow’s and other sounds!!!
We love this cat though, she is old and set in her ways, but there is nothing with that, after all we spoil her as much as we can!!
I’d love to hear other tales from people about what their cat does when they bathe them. Oh by the way, our cat can be heard, no doubt about it saying “NO” when the water is running and we bring her into the bathroom. If I remember next time I’ll record her, so you can hear it, it’s cute!

Wow, Long time no write

I swear, I’ve said it before, I need to blog more often.  But for some reason, I’ll be good for a bit, and then I fall right off again, and I sit here and wonder why?  It may be because my life is a bit boring, or at least I feel that sharing certain aspects of my everyday life really won’t be quite entertaining as it should be, so why write about it.  However, there are some days where things happen that are just so darn funny, and I guess maybe I should share those.

It just so happens that at times the things that take place are told to me by a friend and well, I guess I just laugh for too damn long and by the time I’m done, I forget to write it down.  However, here I want to try and remember a few of those things.

Keep in mind I can’t really disclose where he works, because I don’t want to get him in trouble.  But lets just say he gets call from people all day long, people who haven’t paid their bills.  The funny thing is the reasons why some of them don’t pay the bills, and thus they want to have more time.

One example is a person who had an unexpected expense and lost the payment, he gambled too much money in Vegas.  Doesn’t seem unexpected, but merely stupid.

Another person called in to see if they could get an extension for their payment, their reason, “my father died”.  Okay this would be a good reason, however, looking in the notes, my man saw the father died the year before.  So on top of his job he asked was that your father, or maybe your spouses father?  Giving the person the benefit of the doubt.  But when they said it was their father, and that’s exactly what the notes stated from the year before.  Well let’s just say it becomes obvious that the person is lying, and who knows what they spent their money on.

How about the person who called in and said, “I got 4 words for you, Obamacare.”  Now correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t that one word, and what the hell does this have to do with their payments.  Especially since it was three months before you even had to buy the insurance.

However, my favorite that I can recall right now was a recent call.  He tells me that the person is calling in because they had to get an extension.  Again he has to ask why this is needed.  “Well someone died in my family, they were shot, and we still have the body in the house.”  Wait, that’s all I needed to hear.  How long was the body there?  What the hell?  It was just too much, I can’t even imagine what the hell this family is doing with this body in the house, did the person just get shot, are the police really slow to come.  But better yet, if it did just happen, why in the hell are you calling about a bill that you need to pay?

When I can think of more I’ll be back, and yes I’ll try and find out more of these entertaining calls, and perhaps even about some of the stupid stuff that goes on around here.

Take care, and hope you laugh at least once!

More Bingo time

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