Our first 120 hours in our new home city of Kuwait.
Tuesday the 13 February – a family reunion at Kuwait Airport. It was months in the making and finally a day before Chef’s birthday, we landed just in time to celebrate with our daddy.
Having lived in Dubai before, I was not coming with great expectations of a traditional Middle Eastern City, however you will be pleased to know that I was pleasantly surprised and it is really a great city – bar the manic traffic and impatient drivers.
My first impressions are based on the first 48 hours here:
- OMG the DUST! Seriously dust for days. Husband dearest, please don’t punish me again with dark wood furniture (and a uncleaned new apartment). Today’s air quality index was at 230 just a few minutes ago = very unhealthy. All sports at school have been cancelled. I recall this happening in August of 2015 a few short weeks after our Kuching arrival.
- Not as superficial as Dubai. The houses actually look like they belong in the desert and not in downtown NYC. It is probably why I felt so cheated by Dubai! But this definitely has got something. Don’t get me wrong, there is a still plenty of Gucci shopping available at the Grand Avenue / The Avenues Mall and Marina Mall, but it has a comforting normal way of life feel to it. Still will never match up to Kuching though.
- Taxis are everywhere and no way scarce. They hoot and hail just as they would on Louis Botha – Johannesburg. They cut off everyone too. I have to remind myself to negotiate rate before departure and make sure he puts the meter onto 0.00 as soon as we get in! Expats know this is the first number you get in a new city. It costs around KD 1.250 to the boy’s school one way from home.
- The buses – hold on at all times! You enter as soon as it comes to an abrupt halt (this by the way, is the same way you get off) and as you handover your money and lean on the handlebars, the bus driver simultaneously pulls off into fast traffic and gives you your change and ticket. You fall into the nearest seat and anticipate the next brake slamming action. However, for the boys this was the main event of the week and they just love it. Simple things in life. Bus 66 takes me to Lulu Hypermarket and the gym and bus 999 takes me to the Souks and tailors. Cheap and cheerful Citybus at only 250 Fils.
- The English School of Kuwait is fantastic (TES). They were friendly and welcoming from the get-go and they have been exceptionally helpful in getting the boys settled. Kelsey couldn’t wait to get back into the swing of things so he started school on Thursday at 7:10am. Liam started this morning and he was already owning the classroom. 7:30am is line up and national anthem and then they move off to registration with their form teachers and then they go to their first classes for the day. Kelsey has already noted the vast differences between here and Kuching and even KEPS. School is only a 20 minute walk from the house so that’s what we will do in the cool months and in the hot months we will have to take the school bus or get a driver. The boys make me so proud when they walk into their new surroundings with no fear or concerns, they are so grounded and comfortable with who they are that this is nothing scary at all. I am proud because with all the insecurities they could have… they don’t!National day next week and they will be dressed up in all the Kuwait garb.
- Very expensive compared to Malaysia, but maybe this is the norm all over the world and we were just spoilt in Kuching. I found SA super expensive too. Will do an expense blog one day.
I have come to realise how much the moving gods hate me when it comes to accommodation in the various cities we have lived in.
Firstly, I never have hot water in my kitchen taps, which is just a ball ache as you have to boil the kettle for doing the dishes and you can’t wash your bed linen on hot to kill in gogos that might be lurking. Seriously wtf.
Secondly, my bathrooms are generally PINK. The one and only colour I dislike!
Desert storm has hit hard, and I have now given up on cleaning. Instead I am going to post this and get some shut eye.
Thanks for following us on our journey.