My life in Saudi

I thought some of you might like to hear about my life in Saudi Arabia. It's certainly an experience! Women aren't allowed to drive here and also cant use public transport so I have a driver, which, seeing the standard of driving here, really is no hardship! Anyway, a couple of days ago, my driver had a crash. It wasn't his fault and thankfully he wasn't hurt but the car was. So that's gone in to be repaired and we have been given a loan car. However, I don't think that I will be going out much as it stinks. My driver reckons that someone has been driving around with a goat or baby camel in it. Only in Saudi Arabia!!!

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  • I started a hell of a row in china as I went to put my seatbelt on in the front of a taxi. The driver refused to let me! After a protracted argument apparently they get fined ther if the police see passengers wearing seatbelts as it means the taxi driver is not confident!! Work that one out! And if anyone else has been driven around there, hang on tight!!

  • HaHa! I like it.

  • I can fully sympathise. Half the time that I'm in the car I have my eyes shut because I can't bear to see whats going on and the other half I have to sit on my hands otherwise I'm grabbing on to someone because its so scary! Clemmie

  • Clemmie thanks for the insight - it really sounds so alarming to good old feminist me - but also intriguing. Baby camel smell is positively exotic - keep 'em coming please! Tilda x

  • TildaT , not so exotic when you get out of the car and the smell is following you around! But the baby camels are really pretty and it's amazing to see them striding alongside the road behind their mothers. Clemmie

  • I drive in India, it sounds pretty much the same apart from women being allowed to drive. It can be scary but its very liberating. It keeps you on your toes!

  • You drive in India????!!!! Respect to you ;-)

  • I lived in Egypt for a while and it all sounds very similar. When I first started driving there I kept myself tucked in behind mini-buses. At least they have to stop now and then so you get a moment to catch your breath. I soon joined the fray though and became accustomed to the only rule of the road there, keep moving! It was not uncommon to see whole families clinging to the sides of a motorbike or a loaded horse and cart mirandering along admist the zig zagging horn honking caios of up to four or five streams of none demarked traffic. It was an amazing place to live both exhilerating and fasinating. Cairo in particular has a crazy magical feel that never disappoints. I loved every minute of my time there.

  • That's amazing, my hats off to those of you who drive/ have driven in similar circumstances. There is no way I would drive here even if I was allowed to. Where there are 3 lanes on the road, there are at least 6 lanes of traffic and if there is a pavement then that is a lane too! And the traffic lights have a second countdown to when you can go so its like the whacky races. And of course, as women can't drive, as son as their sons feet can reach the pedals, the boys are allowed to drive so that they can drive their mothers and sisters around. Clemmie

  • a lovely little blog x

  • THi Barrister ...his blog reminds me of driving in Beirut in the 1970's - being used to driving where ever I lived, I ended up borrowing my boy friend's car to take his Mother - a non driver - around town. Problem was I used the same Arabic phrases to gesture at the dreadful drivers that I had heard the boyfriend shout out!! His mother nealy died of shock - apparently what I was shouting was very rude! Luckily Lebanon was very laid back I those days and I escaped unscathed!! My memories of Saudi are the segregation of men & women at the hotel swimming pool - you could only cool off when it was your sexes day at the pool - mind you with the weather we are suffering in UK right now I wouldn't mind a few weeks in the Saudi sun (blistering as it is) even if I could only swim every other day!! Oh and if it's available in Saudi Buy some Febreeze for that car!!!! Kathy

  • Thanks Kathy, I did manage to get some Febreeze although it didn't do much good. But they've cleaned it and changed the air/con filter so it's a lot better. I just hope that they hurry and fix our car. Luckily we live on a compound so don't have the pool segregation but when we've been in a hotel, I haven't even been able to use the pool at all because its only for men and children. But I've just been in the pool here and the water is like a warm bath even though it isn't a heated pool. I must say it makes exercising more of a pleasure. I hope the weather gets better for you all soon. Clemmie

  • Just meant to say, it made me laugh picturing your gestures and Arabic rude phrases! Clemmie

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