Here in Kuwait, a 3 day weekend was announced as it is Prophet Muhammad’s birthday. Our weekend here is on a Friday and Saturday unlike that in the U.K. and other countries across the world where they have it on Saturday and Sunday. However this weekend we had an extra day off, Thursday. It was a much needed long weekend off that I think all teachers were grateful for.
Recently it has felt like everything has been non stop, almost like you are on autopilot, with everything feeling repetitive and exhausting. Needless to say this weekend has been one of my favourites so far since moving back here.
Delicious food, fancy restaurants, relaxing by the sea…what more could you want. Being surrounded by palm trees and beautiful blue skies daily makes me feel like I’m on holiday permanently. I truly believe great weather and being able to enjoy your life outdoors throughout the year has a real positive impact on your mental wellbeing. It is certainly one of the main reasons why I love living abroad, the weather and change of lifestyle! Sitting out at 10pm in a t shirt and jeans is not the norm back in the U.K. Especially where I’m from which is the North West.
Dining out in Kuwait
One thing Kuwait is known for is the endless choice for food! You have every cuisine you can think of here. It’s considered a hobby in itself. Of course we went to a Lebanese restaurant for lunch after we collected our salaries for the month. If you know me then I don’t need to remind you how obsessed I am with Lebanese food.
We went to a place called ‘Ahwet Zeitouna’ which is located on the Gulf road next to the sea.
It very much reminded me of the seaside cafes next to the Raouche rocks in Beirut. Inside was much more impressive, decorated with beautiful flowers, water features as well as crystal white pillars, displaying elegance at every opportunity.
We didn’t realise once we arrived how busy it would be so we had to take our names down and number and then they would call us later on when there was a free table. Whilst we waited we decided to check out the beach next door where we quickly realised we were in the wrong place when a quiet voice appeared from nowhere asking where we were going. After being quickly informed this is in fact an army beach club we made our way back to the restaurant.
Although disappointed we couldn’t see the beach, that soon disappeared as we sat back and relaxed with our frappucinos at Starbucks next door. Before we knew it the restaurant rang and it was time for us to dine.
We chose to sit outside as we wanted to experience the sea view, which was gorgeous. We ordered some hot mezzes as well as a chicken dish. The tabbouleh was great as well as the hummus which is perfectly smooth however I would’ve preferred the thick, puffy hot bread that usually comes with it rather than the thin flat one but hey that’s just me being fussy I guess.
Me and my friends had a good catchup of how the week had been for us and overall just chilled for a couple of hours. It’s moments like this, something so simple as going out for lunch or dinner yet it gives you that space to zone out from being a teacher, which does take up a lot of headspace for the majority of your days. Your brain is constantly thinking of what the next task is or what needs marking today etc…so times like this during the weekend does wonders, at least for me anyway.
Sun, Sea and Sand
I also spent a lot of time at the beach this weekend. From a gathering of people from all over the world from Central America, Egypt, Turkey and Kuwait to spending time at another seaside cafe practicing our communication in each others native languages. I really wanted to keep up my Arabic, as you all know that was my undergrad degree, and he wanted to improve his English, so it fit perfectly. I learnt various Egyptian dialect expressions that I hadn’t heard of before as I am more familiar with the Lebanese and Jordanian dialect if any.
One thing I have enjoyed so far here is meeting people from all over, and not just being so diverse in terms of where they came from but also their life stories and how they live their life back home. I am fascinated by new people already but even more so enjoying the experience here in Kuwait as it is often classed as a very closed off culture where everyone kind of sticks to their own nationality when it comes to friendships.
Making plans for half term
As the weekend came to a close, we also started thinking about plans for the half term as we only have one week left! I know! It feels so long since we’ve had a break but because we started later on in the year that’s why we are having it now.
I’m so ready for this half term, even though it means we have to stay in Kuwait for obvious reasons and can’t travel, I am still determined to enjoy as much as I can.
We have already made some plans for spending a few nights at a fancy hotel here with a beach, spa and pool etc to feel as though we are on holiday. We also said we would like to go on a boat/yacht trip at some point too. I had previously done some scuba diving here for the first time ever so I’m thinking to perhaps give that another go again. Despite it being terrifying I love every minute of it!
It’s a fairly short post today as I just wanted to check in with you all and let you know what I’ve been up to the last few days. Hope everyone is keeping well and okay as much as they can be during this awful times.