I recently moved into a new apartment here in Jeddah, it was great to get out of the hotel after spending 3 months there, and settle in to some form of normality. This was my first weekend in the apartment, having been back in Dubai last weekend, so a good chance to get the place ship shape and kick back a bit.
As with my previous stays in Saudi Arabia, the new residence is located in a ‘western compound’, which offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, where you are far more likely to hear English spoken, than the usual sound of Arabic.
In addition to a number of very inviting swimming pools, the compound contains a collection of apartments and villas of various shapes and sizes, so us residents are a mixture of individuals, couples and families. There is a central area with a restaurant and small supermarket (as can be seen in the photo above), plus we have a well equipped gym, and squash courts – plenty to keep the locals occupied.
First stop this weekend was the supermarket, with little food in the fridge, and no cleaning products in the cupboards, it had to be done. I don’t have a car as yet (still not sure about that one), so I rely on Uber’s to get me around – whilst the journey to the supermarket was easy, coming back with a vacuum cleaner, numerous bags of shopping, a bucket, broom and mop wasn’t so straight forward!
Ok, I have to confess, I won’t be doing too much housework myself, as within an hour of moving in, Flo, from Eritrea, knocked on my door, offering to take care of ‘sir’s cleaning’, so my involvement is limited to supplying the necessary products!
That aside, it’s been a fairly relaxing weekend, it’s good to have the opportunity to walk around the compound; I enjoy being out an about, and the location of the hotel I was living in didn’t really lend itself to safe walking (other than on the Tahlia Walkway, which you can read more about here).
As mentioned, the compound has it’s own restaurant, so I took the opportunity to sample the breakfast menu. I settled on the ‘Rancher’s breakfast’ (fortunately, being a rancher was not a prerequisite), and enjoyed a really good feed – in fact you might be forgiven for thinking it was really a ‘full english’, but whatever it’s called, it’s something that I will probably have again.
The weekend also included catching up on some TV, I recently acquired a good internet connection, so that has been a big plus, its amazing how dependent we have become onthe whole ‘being online’ thing. In my case, it means that streaming Netflix etc. becomes the norm.
The compound also has a pretty good TV service of it’s own, supplied to each residence, topped in my view by Bein Sports where English Premier League, and FA Cup football are a welcome part of the entertainment package.
But best of all is the simple pleasure of getting out and about:
As the weekend comes to a close, and I prepare for the working week ahead, I can look back on an enjoyable break in a relaxing environment – and living as we do, separated from our loved ones, this is something to be valued.