A Travellerspoint blog

This blog is published chronologically. Go straight to the most recent post.

We're Here!!

sunny 107 °F

Stepping off the plane at the airport, we were greeted with a blast of hot, humid, sweaty desert air. If there's a Hell, I think I just stepped foot in it. The air was so thick, I was lucky I could breathe. Did I forget to mention we came in at 10 pm? 10 pm at night and it was STILL this hot? What will the daytime bring? Thank God we'll have a pool to swim in at home and the Arabian Gulf across the street, plenty of places to cool off, right? Im so thankful I love to swim as much as fish.

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The car ride home from the airport was amazing to say the least. We live in the heart of the city, amongst all the incredible, architecturally built towers. Most of the towers are lit up to accentuate the building. So many different light colors on the towers, red, purple, green, white, the colors are endless. We ended up having to take 2 taxis to get home from the aiport, afterall, there were 4 of us, 4 animals and ALL that luggage!!

Seeing our flat for the first time, it was everything I expected it to be, and more. I couldnt ask for a better place to live. There are 4 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and its all furnished. The fourth bedroom is much smaller than the others and is supposed to be the "maids room". Apparently many Expatriates (I'm now an Expatriate!) have a maid who lives with them and does the cooking and cleaning, and for very cheap wages. I'm not so much into having a stranger live with me, so we won't be doing that. At first I was not so interested in having a stranger come into my home and clean, but with talking to friends, they all had maids, so I gave one a try. A friend of my husband had a maid who came highly recommended. We gave her a try and we've had her ever since. She comes in once a week for a few hours. There's nothing greater than coming home to a freshly cleaned home!

Posted by barefootin 16:00 Archived in Qatar Comments (0)

Pinch Me, Am I Dreaming?

sunny 102 °F

The day after we got here, my husband took us out driving around town a bit. There are so many beautiful, amazing, intriguing buildings here. We live in the heart of downtown Doha, so we see alot of the buildings every day, but to see them from afar is much different. I stand outside on the balcony so often that overlooks the Arabian Gulf and I cant believe I am 8,000 miles from home and living HERE! I cant believe I get to see the ocean every day, its surreal, makes me feel like its too good to be true.
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The Doha Skyline

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The Aspire Tower

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The Zig Zag Towers

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City of Doha

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The Pearl

Posted by barefootin 14:29 Archived in Qatar Comments (0)

The Call To Prayer

sunny 105 °F

The first wkend here Dwayne took us to Sealine Beach. This place is well known for "dune bashing". A 4x4 is a "must-have" unless you like pushing yourself out of a sand dune. Sealine Beach, as well as the desert, is a 45 minute drive from our home. The boys, my husband and myself tore thru some sand in our JEEP and "attempted" to climb a large sand dune. My husband bragged how well he could climb a large sand dune with his JEEP, well, today wasn't one of those days. We took the dogs with us and they LOVED being able to run as far as they wanted. Neither of the dogs were too fond of swimming in the ocean, but they'll get used to it.
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Rylan with Jack
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Sunset at Sealine Beach
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Dwayne Sand Duning

Onto another subject, television. Coming here, I thought we'd have great channels available for us immediately...that wasn't the case. Dwayne hadn't upgraded the free cable that comes with our place. FREE cable, which were all mostly in Arabic. My favorite non-English channels are the Arabic music video channel and a religious programming channel that plays all day long because for most of the day it shows people praying at the Kaaba in Mecca. I enjoy watching this channel for a couple of reasons: it's my only chance to see prayers, since as a non-Muslim I can't enter a mosque or prayer room and it's the closest I'll ever get to Mecca for the same reason. I cannot believe how many people attend prayer at Mecca, hundreds of them. Daily calls to prayer echo from the many mosques in the Middle East. Muslims are supposed to pray five times a day, during (and preferably at the beginning of) five different times of day. All the mosques (and some radio stations) broadcast when one of these prayer times is beginning. Hearing the Mosques call the prayer around the city is so beautiful. One after another throughout the city. When we are out driving and you can hear the Prayer being called, I put the windows down in the vehicle to listen to it. There's just something about it that makes me overcome with peacefulness. When the Prayer is called, you see many men (sometimes women, but the majority are men) running or walking toward the nearest Mosque. There are a few countries that do not allow women in the Mosques because according to the Qur'an (similar to a Bible) the prayer of women is better in their house than in the mosque and the prayer of women is better in their rooms than in their house.
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Muslims Going To Attend Prayer
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Men Praying In Mosque

Posted by barefootin 09:28 Archived in Qatar Comments (0)

Perhaps I'm A Gypsy At Heart...

sunny 78 °F

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As a girl who grew up in a small country town and didn't have a passport until she was 45, life is about to become exciting.....

So why exactly am I doing this blog? I decided to maintain a weblog while here, so that I can keep track of my experiences and communicate with friends family at the same time. I will post many of our photographs from trips we've taken & things we've experienced. So...here I am. And here you are.

I moved to Qatar four months ago, during one of the hottest months in the Middle East. I packed up myself, 2 teenage sons, 2 dogs, 2 cats, 10 suitcases ( 1 of which, "blew out" on the way to the airport), 2 large boxes, and was ready to head for the Middle East to join my husband who had already been here for 16 months. For those 16 agonizing months, maintaining a long distance relationship with the husband, I kicked around the idea of moving to the Middle East with him. He had accepted a job he couldn't refuse, which involved moving 8,000 miles from our home known as "Iowa". In our eyes, Iowa doesn't have much to offer in my husbands profession. He could've easily gotten a job somewhere in Iowa, but nothing in comparison to the one he was being offered here in Doha. His company in Doha would sponsor him for a minimum of 2 years, we'd have free healthcare, free flight tickets given to us once a year to fly back home for a visit, free housing ,(which comes with an incredible view of the Arabian Gulf) an attractive salary and the company would pay 50 percent of the childrens schooling expense. BUT, the most important of them all, we'd be together as a family. Jianna, our daughter, was going off on her own into the college world, and with Kyle, our oldest son, living in Florida with his wife, Daniela, it was only my husband and I with 2 boys left at home. I hated to uproot the boys once again and move them away from their friends, but in the end, I knew Iowa was not for us. I phoned Dwayne and asked him how soon he could get us there. In the blink of an eye, I relaized I was headed for the Middle East to live the life of an Expatriate. While I was kinda excited, I also had so many questions, things like, what are the supermarkets like? Would I be able to tell what was in cans and packets? What would happen if the kids got sick? What if I couldn't speak Arabic? etc, etc, . I was about to set foot in a third world country, and I was nervous. I was most excited about the cultural changes we would experience. Having grown up with parents who took us camping every year, we were able to visit many other States in the USA and beyond. We visited Tennessee, Kansas, Missouri, Texas, Mexico, Florida, Canada, etc... I look at it like this, I have a LOVE of different cultures. I enjoy seeing how others from different parts f the World live, how they interact with one another, the different types of meals they prepare, the types of homes they live in. It's all so interesting to me. Perhaps I'm a gypsy at heart, wanting to travel the World??

Posted by barefootin 14:02 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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