Saturday, May 16, 2015

Top Ten Things I Love About Oman-Top Ten Things I hate About Oman

10.) I love the  silver scent of frankincense. I miss it when I leave Oman.
9.) I love being able to hear the adhan (call to prayer) although this does happen anywhere in the world where Muslims are in majority.
8.) Abaya fashion. As a Muslim woman, I love abayas, caftans, scarves, all that, so in Oman, I always find what I want or I can get it made.
7.) I love that Omani women are so friendly. Compared to other GCC states, you'll have the easiest time making local friends in Oman, and even if you marry a local, you won't get death stares ALL the time;).
6.) I love the coast, the beaches, grilled mishakeek, camping, fishing, all that.
5.) As a history lover, exploring countless forts and castles and bronze age sites of archeologicial significance is totally how I love to spend my weekends (and work too, if I had my way).
4.) Photography-photo wise Oman is very pictureesque.
3.) Omani coffee-I am addicted. Other flavours, like rose, frankincense, cardamom, are always with me and they have changed how I think of food.
2.) Islamic books are much easier to find here than the land far and away. Actually, much easier than in any other Arab/Muslim country. Oman does not control religious freedom, and as a Sunni, I have had a chance in Oman, to read about the beliefs of others, Shia, Ibadhi, etc... along with reading from Sunni sources. As I can read four books over a week, this is great for me. Also, I guess, this lack of "hate" for other Muslims, its absence, is part and par of that. The mentality, of those folks are weird but not harmful, rather than, lets judge them and kill them or in the least, make them small, and exclude them, wins me over.
1.) As a Muslim woman, but yet, not Omani, I love the freedom of Oman to be what I want to be, do what I want to do. I haven't found that in many places in the Arab world, or place in the world where Arabs are in majority or control majority thought.
0.) Because I had a list of only ten things I love, I also love the winter and evening weather.

10.) How some people think of maids or workers.
9.) The fact that even though there are more mosques around, I go less, due to the language barrier. My Arabic sucks so attending lectures is hard, unless it is more mundane subjects I already know well enough. I am terrible at learning languages. And what I learn, even to the point of partial fluency, I forget if I don't use it. And grammer and me, totally suck together.
8.) I miss vintage shopping and antique shopping. They just don't really exist here, and I feel I am missing part of my soul because of that, ha ha ha.
7.) Omani men are too  friendly, i.e stalkerish, creepy (not all of them, but any of the ones I encounter while walking alone are),and they often ruin walking or exploring places alone.
6.) The summer and daytime weather can be too hot to do too much outside, which limits me to boring stuff, like malls, or exploring places I have already seen, museums, etc.
5.) The cost of eating out for such a small selection of cuisines. I miss Vietnamese, I miss actual Italian, I miss Moroccan, I miss Irish, I miss British pub food, I miss French, I miss West Coast... the list goes on and on.
4.) Public transit is non-existent. Serriously, serriously, I miss my home city, for walking, and ease of getting around.
3.) The lack of skilled trades. Getting anything done in Oman is a hassle in terms of electricians, plumbers, elevator maintenance, etc...
2.) Bureaucracy in government. And at the office. Getting anything done is a mystery as to how to do it, takes 3 x longer than is is supposed to,  there is no transparency, and sometimes, corruption. And I understand, I contribute to it when I bribe the IT guys with sandwiches and tea in order to have them fix my software issues, but hey, I can't wait 4 months!!!!!!
1.) Omantel. Sucks. Internet, sucks. Skype blocked, sucks. The cost of calling in Oman and internationally, sucks. Getting someone to come hook you up for wireless.... a year to never.
0.) Omani cultures impact on me, being quieter, being less fashionable, being less well-rounded, being less hopeful of the future for my daughter in terms of rights and freedoms,

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Can you write a post about shopping in Oman?
Where can a tourist buy affordable hijabs and abayas.

Anonymous said...

very interesting thanks! Can relate to many of your points (live in the neighboring country)

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Anonymous: Sure, I can try. But I guess I should get GPS courundinates and pictures of the signs? And that's some work, so please forgive if it late.

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Anonymous #2 down: GCC all the way;)