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Expat Life, Family Life

The wanderer returns to Muscat

May 19, 2013
Well Bloglets, I’ve had a busy couple of weeks galavanting and now thankfully I am back in Muscat and trying to get back into my usual routine. Don’t ask me what my usual routine is, it mostly consists of being lazy but maybe I’ll blog about the day in the life of a house wife another day.

My latest adventure took me back home to the shores of “home” in Bonnie Scotland. It was a somewhat spontaneous journey as I didn’t even have any flights booked until a couple of days before I left, this is not in my nature at all – I just love to plan things! My reason for a trip home was to sort some things out with our house back in the UK which kept me busy for most of my trip there.

The weather treated me well and most days were dry with some sunshine. It was nice to get away from the intense heat of the Middle East for a couple of weeks.

Things in the house took up almost every day of my trip home but I managed to fit in some visiting where possible, sacrificing sleeping and resting but at least I managed to get some fun in along the way. I’m lucky to have helpful inlaws who had already completed some chores for me which made life that bit easier.

A visit to see my family ended in me and Graham taking his mini motorbike out for a spin. He has had this thing since he was about 14 and we were surprised that it even still worked!

The view of Bennachie from my parents home was a welcome sight for sore, traveled eyes. It was so nice to see green grass & fields again instead of sand and rock!

I got to see my Dad again as the last time we saw each other was August before I left as he was travelling out to Houston for work. He was one of many people I didn’t manage to catch a picture which I regret, Linda your another one I forgot. We were too busy gossiping as usual I totally forgot!

My second other main reason for making the trip home was to see my beautiful new nephew, Max. On my last trip home in February I was lucky enough to attend Samantha’s baby shower, she is my oldest friend so I couldn’t miss it. I hadn’t planned to be home again until August meaning that he would be 4 months old before I met him so I was over the moon to get to see him at 4 weeks old. Being so far away from your friend when she has her first baby is a tough thing and I wished I could have been with her.

Beautiful baby Max <3

Me and Kay managed to find a dinosaur in Aberdeen! And even have a fish & chip supper mmmmm, thanks Kay! 🙂

Abby and I managed to find the bottom of a bottle of Grey Goose! It was so nice to see her as I hadn’t seen her since the week before I left home in August. It was just like old times and hopefully I will see her here in the not too distant future.

It was lovely to see my sister and her two twin boys, Ben and Adam. I took the boys for ice cream and some fun at the play park where me & Graham ended up hogging the slide.. Big kids!

Towards the end of the trip the weather changed with rain clouds and dark skies, this is the Scotland I remember! 

All in all it was a reasonably successful trip, I managed to get most of the things done that I set out to do and managed to fit in some visiting along the way.

Sadly time ran out too fast and I didn’t manage to see everyone or spend enough quality time with the people that I wanted to due to conflicting schedules and people having to work when I was free.  Hopefully they will understand that it’s not personal and I was sent home with a purpose, any free time I had was just a bonus. 

Now time to catch up on some sleep and acclimatize to the heat again..

Adventure Time, Family Life

Back to the homeland

February 16, 2013
My husband is from a small historic town called Banff in the North East of Scotland, he was raised here and all his family live in the town also. Because this is the place we started our life together I would class this as my adopted home town too.
This area of the world is well known for the bitter winter and snow but it is also a beautiful place to be, I took a few snaps of the area whilst I was there to show you how different it is there to the Middle East where I now live. Most of my readers are International and won’t know where Banff is or what it looks like but they do say a picture tells a thousand words. (Is that the right phrase? I’m disputing it with Bob just now but you get what I mean…)

Banff is well known for the history in the area and the first castle was built in 1163 AD to protect from Viking invaders. It has it’s own harbor and well known for fishing amungst several other things.

The history is still there if you look closely, sometimes very closely. Like this for example- A hotel dating back to 1801 is now a take away pizza shop.. Or the stables for the horses belonging to the castle is now a pub on Low Street.

This is hubby at the door to ‘Home Bakery’, even the doors are tiny here!

Me hanging out with the Turra Coo

This photo is from my neck of the woods near Inverurie but you will get the jist of the cloudy weather and there is still even some snow left on the ground.

Sometimes it’s the little things you miss from home that make you smile, I’ve never thought before about why this post box is in the wall but it’s really sweet and humble looking.

Expat Life, Family Life, Other Stuff

Importing your dog into Oman from the UK

January 25, 2013

I was recently asked by the Expat Arrivals website to write a piece about importing dogs to Oman from the UK as I have recent first hand knowledge of this. The article is now online and you can read it by clicking here.

The lack of information online can be quite frustrating when you are trying to make the difficult & expensive decision whether to ship your pet here or not, what information there is online is generally vague and years out of date. Hopefully this article can help people to make the right decision.

Penny with her pet passport all ready to travel.

My dog, Penny, loves it here and she has a great life but that doesn’t mean to say that every dog is going to have the same. When making the decision you need to separate the emotional and practical side of it, don’t be selfish and really think about whether your dog can actually handle the change of temperature and lifestyle. Sometimes I think the fact that she is a German Shepherd is a blessing for her, although people are terrified of her size they know the breed as the Royal Omani Police use this breed also. If she was some kind of other dog such as a Pitbull or Doberman they may be alot more frightened due to the stigma attached to these breeds.

This was the crate specially made for Penny, due to her size, for the long trip from Scotland to Oman. This is not a nice experience packing them into here and leaving them in a cargo building not knowing how they are until a full 24 hours later when they arrive.

If your dog (or cat for that matter but I don’t have much experience with them) would not handle the temperature or a complete change in routine and lifestyle then you need to leave them behind, just remember that Oman is a Muslim country and dogs are not widely accepted here. Do your research!

Some people feel that they cannot live without the company of a dog which is completely understandable but there are other options than stressing out your dog transporting them here. There are hundreds of animals here waiting for a loving home, try contacting Qurum Vets or the Oman Animal Adoption Agency to see the animals they have available for fostering and Adoption.

Hopefully this article can help you to make up your mind what will work best for you and your pet.

Expat Life

There’s snow snow here

January 25, 2013

While the UK is literally freezing cold and a huge blanket of deep snow falling across the country I am secretly wishing for some of the winter white stuff myself. Of course, that is never going to happen here in Oman where the winter temperature is still mid 20’s.

As much as I love the sunshine here in Oman, there is something so beautiful about the fresh snow falling. Here are some pictures of my beautiful “home” courtesy of my brother, Graham.

I will be home in the UK in a few weeks time, If I am lucky there will be enough snow for a snowman but not that much that my plane gets diverted.. fingers crossed!