Confessions of a Saudi Diva: Life in Dubai

As I sit down to write this post from a hidden coffee shop in JBR walk (the location can’t be disclosed as I must protect my privacy), a storm of thoughts hits my noisy mind. That’s why, I won’t be able to write a “normal” culture blog post today. It’s just not doable. I can’t focus on a topic. I’m the last customer in the café. The barista is regularly having conversations with himself and occasionally glancing at me. He even asked why I was still single when I’m so beautiful the last time I was here. I’m starving (all I had was a late breakfast).

Another reason why I can’t write another culture post is that I’m simply overwhelmed with the amount of support that I’m getting from friends and readers of this blog. Whether in comments, Facebook messages or verbal words, I’ve been hearing a lot of positive and encouraging words from everyone. Thank you is not enough. I’m speechless.

Let me spice up this series of cultural posts with an “express” personal post. I’ll give you an update on my life in Dubai and what’s been going on in my world in brief, short, concise points. Here it goes:

  • Once again, one of my recent blog readers asked me to start writing my autobiography. The girl (who’s interning with me at the office) advised me to start writing now. Her view was that if I keep delaying the idea, then I risk  not getting it done.
  • The reason that I don’t intend to write my biography anytime soon is that I feel like I’m currently living on the edge (which is how I’ve been feeling since I left home in the summer of 2009). Every five years, I must visit the Saudi embassy in Dubai to renew my passport. I’ve only done this once since I left Saudi. My passport expires at the end of this year. Therefore, I must make another visit to the embassy in the next few months to get that done. The experience isn’t that grand. I wore my scarf when I visited last time. The visit took me on a flashback trip to living in Saudi. Let’s just say that I’m not too excited to visit again this summer. I think I’ll plan it for when my dad visits in Ramadan. That way, I can drag him with me to the embassy!
  • Miraculously, my goals have now shrunk to two! let me explain. After attending the latest Arabian Travel Market bloggers networking session (the first type of event to be organized at this year’s Arabian Travel Market), I felt that despite the positive networking with PR executives, sales and marketing people and hotel managers at the session, I wasn’t too excited to contact them for hotel stays or reviews after the event. The reason is simple. Since starting my new blog, I’ve decided to write genuine, honest and impartial reviews only. When accepting an invite from a hotel, resort or cruise operator, they expect you to write positive reviews only. Being a journalist, I don’t feel that this matches my vision or mission for the blog. I want to give my readers honest, balanced and fair reviews and posts. Nothing less. That’s why, despite a fun networking session and a big stack of business cards, I won’t be contacting anyone to ask for a discount on a stay, a free meal or a spa treatment. I haven’t done any of this since starting this blog and I want to continue things that way.
  • That’s why, I’ve decided that this blog will now remain as a hobby only. I still want to create a proper website and transfer all my posts from wordpress onto a new site. I also want to spend time understanding my blog statistics, the number of followers and the analytics behind all of that. However, I will do that in my own time. I will enjoy it rather than stress about how to turn those figures into cash or other monetary returns. And that’s how my goals have magically transformed from being three to only two 🙂 (big sigh of relief!).
  • One thing I’m really looking forward to is a private reading session with a psychic at a well-being center close to my home. I’ve been to that center and reviewed one of their workshops on my old blog, but I only found out about the spiritual reader recently from a friend who highly recommended her. The waiting list to see her can reach up to two months! I’ve booked my reading session last week for the 18th of June! she was available on the 12th, but I go to work on Sunday mornings, so I decided to see her on the following Saturday. Honestly, I can’t wait to hear what she has to tell me about my career and personal life outlook and future predictions. I even plan to prepare questions to take with me to ask her. After six years of working hard towards my goals in the city and not quite getting to where I want to be, I think a highly popular psychic could add value and insight into my struggling life.
  • Until my time to see the reader arrives in around two months from now, I plan to keep you entertained with some interesting posts. Coming up after this post is an Abu Dhabi staycation, a short break to a GCC city (destination to be revealed when I review the hotel) and more exciting and insightful culture posts. So stay tuned!

Please keep your comments, suggestions and ideas coming. I truly enjoy each one of them and appreciate your support and motivation to this blog. Life in Dubai sure is great right now.

Since I’m starving (only had breakfast at around 2:00 pm) and it’s now after 9:00 pm, I’ll end this life in dubai post here and head back home to finish some house chores and get ready for work tomorrow (more like wash dishes and make plans for the week ahead).

Wishing you a positive, productive and inspirational week ahead. 

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  • Kevin says:

    Dear Saudi Diva
    Thank you for another interesting post. I like your comments about the need to be impartial when reviewing hotels, spas etc. It’s so difficult now to know where to look for an honest review. I always felt Tripadvisor was the best for honest feedback but recently I posted a l two star review about a high profile restaurant here in Dubai and I found that it was kept ‘pending’ for two weeks. Interestingly, when I post five star reviews they get posted within twenty four hours! It got me thinking about the credibility of even these high profile review sites. I found, after researching online, that many people are now questioning the integrity of the site. How can they be impartial when they are depending on commission from hotels and restaurants to book through their site? Sorry about the rant but it struck a chord when I read your blog!
    I’ll be really interested to hear about your experience with the psychic. How exciting! I wonder what news she is predicting for you? I hope it is a positive reading. You deserve to get a break soon in both your business and personal life. You have integrity and it’s important in this ever more commercial world that integrity finds it’s reward.
    Good luck Saudi Diva!

    • Nada says:

      Thank you Kevin! I couldn’t agree more with your views about sites like TripAdvisor. Everything has become so commercial nowadays. I always get asked to review places that I visit on TripAdvisor and it always sounds like they want me to help promote them and nothing more. That’s when I decide not to write a review, because I don’t think that’s the purpose of such websites. Honestly, I can’t wait to see the psychic on June 18! I’ll definitely update you with what she tells me. The only other time that I had a reading was at a temple in Hong Kong. It was a palm reading though. This one is different. My friend told me that she just reads people by looking at them! LOL

  • Nada says:

    I would appreciate it if you could keep your negative comments to yourself and not spread the negative energy here. Please refrain from commenting if you don’t have anything positive to say or add. I don’t accept any negativity in this space. Thanks.

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