Saturday, December 13, 2008

Doha? Doha who?

We're moving to Doha ...in January! It is the capital city of Qatar and Richard has an exciting role waiting for him with the bank where he works. We're excited about the adventure this move will bring for our family. I'm sure there will be challenges, but what we hear from other expats who live there, or have recently lived there, is their experience is exceedingly positive. So the next few weeks are all about gearing up for expat life!

I'm still learning more and more about Doha every day, but here's what I know so far:

1) They have Starbucks
2) The weather is either hot or very hot
3) While driving you must watch out for camels
4) It's rich in oil money & is the leading home of natural gas, but it's also rich with Islamic culture. As with other major cities in the UAE, there is a growing dichotomy between increased respect for progressive, western thought & religions while honoring the conservative values that have dominated their culture for centuries. Do I have to wear a hijab or burka? No. Can Richard & I kiss and love on each other in the park? Probably not a good idea.
5) There will be lots of sand

To add to the craziness, we will be traveling to Cyprus to visit Richard's family for the holidays. We're very much looking forward to it, but I'm a bit suspect about my ability to stay relaxed on vacation while thinking of all that needs to be done here before our move. It's a good problem to have I admit, and it will be great to enjoy the holidays with family who have probably managed to get a tree up and various other holiday nicknacks to indicate for baby Isabelle that it's Christmastime. Otherwise, the only thing she'd know of Christmas is moving boxes & Skype.

In between seeing friends & family, working, planning for vacation followed by a move across the world, I am saying good-bye in small, manageable doses each day to this city that I have a sweet, strong love for. And good-bye to the people in it, who because of them, I have called it my home for the past 8 years.

Who we're dancing to this week: The Hotel Cafe presents
Winter Songs

3 comments:

Heather said...

Although we will most likely see eachother no less, it makes me sad knowing there will be a whole ocean between us! I'm so happy for you and your family though, what a great opportunity.
Thanks for the music recommendation, I just downloaded it from itunes & love it!

The Murphy Three said...

Lucas is still nursing his broken heart. Long distance relationships when you cant read or write yet are challenging, but he's determined to make it work :-)

gert - jan said...

Dear two,

Indeed Isabelle is as beautifull as her grandmother. The Dutchess, I say.

And indeed will make sure that we are all there when Tobias gets himself married.

We are now at Crapoel and understand you are with the rest of the van der Meers at Cyprus. Seems great and close to Verenigde Arabische Emiraten.

Een Zalig Uiteinde.

Dirk, Conny, Tom, Dana, Gert Jan, Davide, Janneke, Pien en Dirkje