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Share ONLY the things you LIKE about teaching in KSA
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Hatcher



Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Posts: 286

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And what are the major attractions in the KSA? Farazan Island? Taif? Abha?
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Gulezar



Joined: 19 Jun 2007
Posts: 243

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 5:33 am    Post subject: Re: Share ONLY the things you LIKE about teaching in KSA Reply with quote

EnglishDoYouSpeakIt wrote:
There is a plethora of travel opportunities within 4000 KM.
I like the food here, and it isn't expensive.
Salaries are great.

-Please keep it positive, don't nitpick others answers or bring sarcasm into the mix. A tall order, but let's see what we can come up with.


Would mentioning that the plethora of travel opportunities would not be available to most single women working in Saudi be nitpicking? Saudi does have some amazing scenery and grand archeological sites. However, my travels in Saudi were trips to the Mall and the local suqs.
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bulgogiboy



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 788

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

EnglishDoYouSpeakIt wrote:
There is a plethora of travel opportunities within 4000 KM.
I like the food here, and it isn't expensive.
Salaries are great.

-Please keep it positive, don't nitpick others answers or bring sarcasm into the mix. A tall order, but let's see what we can come up with.


Within 4000 km?? There can't be many regions on earth that don't have a plethora of travel opportunities within 4000 km, surely? (no Leslie Nielson jokes, please). That's not a criticism of KSA, it's just questioning how on earth it can be anything unique to that particular country. Even within large countries like the USA, China, etc, you can stay within the same borders and still have very diverse and fascinating travel experiences.

Anyway, I'll put my Saudi apologist hat (or guttrah, rather) on for this topic, and list some good points about working in KSA:

- Working with a wide spectrum of interesting and/or eccentric (or just plain mental) co-workers.
- Lots of free time for video games.
- Improved health due to a lack of alcohol/appetising food.
- Reduced waistline due to more gym time, and the reasons above.
- Living in a surreal and bizarre environment (fun for a short time at least).
- The almost unparalleled feeling of joy/relief which you experience when you step off a plane which has taken you outside of KSA.
- The fact that after having worked in KSA, almost any other country, even other Gulf states, seems 'liberal' by comparison.


I really do list these as sincere positives of having worked in KSA. The last two points in particular were really big positives for me. Leaving Qatar on holiday doesn't give any thrill at all, to be honest. You can get pretty much all the things here that you can get back home, and there's no amazing buzz when you get to your destination.

However, when you knew you were out of KSA, for me at least, the feeling was awesome! It was like all your birthdays at once! You'd get so excited about bacon sandwiches, whisky, and, wait for it...spending time with women! :O

I also notice that where some other teachers (who have never lived in Saudi) might moan about Doha being 'boring' and 'too conservative', I feel like I'm living in Las Vegas! I'll always be grateful to KSA for that, sincerely.
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Share ONLY the things you LIKE about teaching in KSA Reply with quote

Quote:
Would mentioning that the plethora of travel opportunities would not be available to most single women working in Saudi be nitpicking? Saudi does have some amazing scenery and grand archeological sites. However, my travels in Saudi were trips to the Mall and the local suqs.


Bollocks. There are plenty of travel opportunities. A group of single women hired a driver and went to Mecca during Haj break. I visited Hufoof last week with a group of six women and am going to Jeddah during winter break with two other women. I'm pretty content to stay home most weekends and go to the mall or a souk, but many of my younger colleagues travel within the country quite frequently. Everyone I know is planning to go to Dubai, Beirut or Sri Lanka for break. These destinations would be prohibitively expensive from the States on a teacher's salary. The last two posters are nitpicking, IMO. Not everyone has a negative experience in Saudi and many make the most of their time here.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12397
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well said ! My only proviso is to say AGAIN - choose your masters with care !
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trapezius



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 1669
Location: Land of Culture of Death & Destruction

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I read the thread title, I thought it was soliciting positives about the actual TEACHING process/job in Saudi. So I thought the thread would be mostly empty, but then I realized after opening it that people were listing positives about being/working in Saudi, not necessarily actual stuff related to the teaching job.

So, here are my answers to both:

Positives about working in education in SA:
* Lots of holidays. (I dunno, are there more holidays here? I only have experience of here, and I am happy with the number of holidays we get)

Positives about living/working in SA:
* Low cost of living.
* Very low rates of crime.
* No taxes.
* Availability of a large variety of imported food items.
* Labneh (I can eat large amounts by the spoon, although the one I eat is Turkish Labneh).
* Compounds (if you get a chance to be on a good one).
* Very low cost of healthcare and medicines if you have insurance.
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fledex



Joined: 05 Jun 2011
Posts: 314

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 2:38 am    Post subject: Re: Share ONLY the things you LIKE about teaching in KSA Reply with quote

EnglishDoYouSpeakIt wrote:
fledex wrote:
EnglishDoYouSpeakIt wrote:


-Please keep it positive, don't nitpick others answers or bring sarcasm into the mix. A tall order, but let's see what we can come up with.


90% of income is disposable (and it gets disposed I guess)
lots of holidays (with most employers)
a chance to see what the dark ages were like (if you're into the adventure)

that's about it


You even quote the requested formula to follow and then break it? You are the antithesis of the spirit of this topic. Go complain about EdEx some more.


Another personal attack from you Dr. Edex. Quite shallow.
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

johnslat wrote:
Dear EnglishDoYouSpeakIt,

I'd say you've been a bit unjust to fledex. I think the chance to time travel is one of the major attractions of Saudi (and I'm NOT being sarcastic.)

Regards,
John


I don't think Saudis live in the dark ages. In spite of their repressive government, they know what the rest of the world is like thanks to the internet, TV, and travel. My girls know more about modern music than I do. Of course, I can only speak about life in Riyadh. I'm looking forward to Jeddah which I have heard has been described as "a degenerate fleshpot". Smile
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bulgogiboy



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 788

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

readytotravel wrote:
johnslat wrote:
Dear EnglishDoYouSpeakIt,

I'd say you've been a bit unjust to fledex. I think the chance to time travel is one of the major attractions of Saudi (and I'm NOT being sarcastic.)

Regards,
John


I don't think Saudis live in the dark ages. In spite of their repressive government, they know what the rest of the world is like thanks to the internet, TV, and travel. My girls know more about modern music than I do. Of course, I can only speak about life in Riyadh. I'm looking forward to Jeddah which I have heard has been described as "a degenerate fleshpot". Smile


Jeddah: Bollocks it is, it's still Saudi Arabia. Perhaps Jeddah is a little "degenerate" by Saudi standards, as a larger percentage of women brazenly don't cover their faces, and even sometimes their hair :O, but it ain't going to give Bangkok competition any time soon. Laughing

Dark Ages: Sorry, but in my experience, many of them ARE stuck in the dark ages. Also, simply knowing about modern music, or modern anything, doesn't mean your mind can't be stuck in medieval times. I knew plenty of male students in Saudi who liked modern music, tv shows, movies, etc, but they still thought women should be kept in their place (i.e. not driving, voting, travelling independently, etc), and should be kept in it by the use of violence, if necessary.
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Hatcher



Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Posts: 286

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:28 am    Post subject: The brotherhood Reply with quote

I say the best thing is that the Saudi males are very sociable and have a genuine friendliness. Most Saudis are not good students but that is your opportunity to use your skills...

For the record, it isnt for me.
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are men everywhere who would like to keep women in their place, but I have met many Saudi men, from tour guides to taxi drivers to businessmen who don't share the sentiments of your students. I like the Saudis, and never cease to be intrigued by the dichotomies in their society. If you think they are all living in the Dark Ages and wish to remain there, then you aren't paying much attention, IMO. Foreigners here who rail against the culture really should go elsewhere. The Saudis will figure it out on their own in their own time, and enshallah they won't emulate Bangkok. Now, feel free to belittle and demean me and comment on my naivety. The spirit of this thread has already been broken by the bitter and disgruntled.
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bulgogiboy



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 788

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

readytotravel wrote:
There are men everywhere who would like to keep women in their place, but I have met many Saudi men, from tour guides to taxi drivers to businessmen who don't share the sentiments of your students. I like the Saudis, and never cease to be intrigued by the dichotomies in their society. If you think they are all living in the Dark Ages and wish to remain there, then you aren't paying much attention, IMO. Foreigners here who rail against the culture really should go elsewhere. The Saudis will figure it out on their own in their own time, and enshallah they won't emulate Bangkok. Now, feel free to belittle and demean me and comment on my naivety. The spirit of this thread has already been broken by the bitter and disgruntled.


So you're seriously saying you don't think opposition to women's rights is just a tad more pronounced in KSA than in the rest of the world? Smile

They don't need to emulate it, cause most Saudi men with money go there on holiday instead! Very Happy

Or rather, by people who perhaps find very few positive things about living in a corrupt, bassackwards, Islamic fundamentalist police state, where women are treated like 2nd-class citizens, and society fixates, to the point of mass-psychosis, on keeping grown men and women from socialising with each other. Laughing
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12397
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some people cannot stand Saudi Arabia from Day One. Better for them and for evreyone else if they do not come or if already here if they go back whence they came !

Their diatribes, here or elsewhere, will not change KSA.
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fledex



Joined: 05 Jun 2011
Posts: 314

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, now that we're off topic, my curiosity has been aroused. If Saudi is not in the dark ages, what about Iran? Has anyone been there recently (last 10 years)? For some reason, the idea that Saudi is not stuck in the dark ages, made me question why there is this animosity between the royal family in Saudi and Iran's leadership? It can't just be the Sumni/Shia tension. Did they have the same animosity during the Shah's regime? I don't think so. Is Iran that much more progressive now than Saudi? My Omani students used to go to Iran for fun; though I don't think it is Bangkok, either.
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
So you're seriously saying you don't think opposition to women's rights is just a tad more pronounced in KSA than in the rest of the world? Smile


Not saying that at all. Just saying foreigners should suck it up or hit the road. Let the Saudis work it out. I believe they will, eventually.
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