That Coffee Morning Jolt

Until I embarked on expat-wife-life, the term "coffee morning" would have conjured an image like this: Or maybe this: You know, the ladies-who-lunch crowd who have gotten the kids to school, gone to the gym, had their blow-outs, and still have some time to kill before lunch.¬†It's morning, there's coffee, and by making enough of … Continue reading That Coffee Morning Jolt

The Winter Garden

The weather has turned! The three-digit temperatures (ahem, 40+ in centigrade) are gone. Winter in Saudi Arabia means breakfast on the patio, dinner under the twinkle lights in the garden, evenings by the pool, afternoons with the windows open listening to the birds. Sure, there are a lot of things you might be used to … Continue reading The Winter Garden

Saudi Cheat Sheet

When people learn I live in Saudi Arabia, the first question tends to be, "So what's it like there?" A big question. But given enough time (say, a meal, rather than a cash-register transaction), the conversations generally¬†cover the same ground. Here, then, are the basic answers to the basic questions about what it's like in … Continue reading Saudi Cheat Sheet

Doing the Saudi Shuffle

I sometimes find myself in situations where the people with me say, "You should write a blog about this." So, I'm going to write a blog about this: This is not where the story started, but what made it a story at all is where it ended. Which is the case with most stories. A … Continue reading Doing the Saudi Shuffle

The Rule of Three: What We Do All Day

A friend asked me this week what I do all day. Surely, she said, you can't go out shopping or travel ALL the time, so...what gives? I, the expat wife barred from having a day job, came here carrying lots of ideas of things to do to fill the time. Subscriptions to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon … Continue reading The Rule of Three: What We Do All Day

Dear Mom (and P.S. Abdullah): Life in a Saudi Arabian Compound

Being back in the U.S. in December and January, among American friends and family, highlighted how far beyond a Westerner's comprehension the idea of living in Saudi Arabia really is. A monarchy? Islamic law? Separate treatment for men and women? Living in a walled compound? To someone who hasn't been here, there's no frame of … Continue reading Dear Mom (and P.S. Abdullah): Life in a Saudi Arabian Compound

An All-American Thanksgiving

I'll be having a different sort of Thanksgiving this year. The restaurant in our compound, which typically does a themed buffet on Thursday nights ("Italian night!" "Indian night!" or the perennial dude favorite, "Carvery night!"), is giving a nod to the Americans by doing a Thanksgiving dinner this week. Butterball turkeys are thawing as we … Continue reading An All-American Thanksgiving