In Nov 2009 I left my comfortable life in Melbourne, Australia and boarded a plane to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Little did I know the experience that it would bring…
In March 2009 I accepted a job as a research scientist at a university in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Eight months later I finally received my visa and plane ticket, packed my bags, said goodbye to my family and friends and left for the great unknown. Not only was I planning to live in another country for at least a year but I was immersing myself in a culture completely foreign to my own.
I soon learned that I would be the only Western woman at my place of work and as an unmarried woman in her 30’s, would have to fight the university that employed me long and hard to maintain my autonomy. For that reason, my story is unique to many other women in the Kingdom.
During my time in Saudi Arabia I learned a lot of things about myself and about the Arab people and their intriguing culture. I knew when I stepped on that plane that my life in Saudi would not be easy but I vowed to open my mind to their way of life and I believe my life is richer because of that.
I write here in this blog about my experiences and observations from my time in Saudi Arabia. I decided to leave in 2011 but I still have many stories to tell.