20 signs you live in the Middle East

I’ve been short on time this week due to work, plus Tom Cruise is in town for the Dubai premiere of his new movie, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, and someone had to show him around (LOL)!

That's actually Tom scaling the Burj Khalifa, half a mile high

Dubai provided a backdrop for the action flick, with Cruise performing a series of heart-stopping stunts clinging to the world’s tallest building.

Since my invite to the red-carpet premiere must have got lost, I’ve been hoping I might bump into him (I had a bit of a crush on Tommo when I was 15, you see – back in the days of Top Gun, when my husband – who stole my heart at Sixth Form College – wanted to fly for the US Air Force and I dreamt I’d be DH-to-be’s wingwoman in a Kelly McGillis-esque fashion).

Anyway, I digress. This post isn’t original – it’s doing the rounds on Facebook and so I apologise if you’ve already seen it. Or wrote it.

It made me chuckle and I hope you enjoy it too.

You know you’ve been living in the Gulf for too long when…

• You’re not surprised to see a goat in the passenger seat

• When phrases like ‘potato peeler’, ‘dish washer’ and ‘fly killer’ are no longer household items but are actually job titles

• You need a sweater when it cools down to 80 degrees Fahrenheit

Dubai: A city of contrasts (not my behind unfortunately)

• You expect everyone (over 4 years old) to own a mobile phone

• Your idea of housework is leaving a list for the maid

• You believe speed limits are only advisory and expect all police to drive BMWs or Mercedes

• You believe the definition of a nanosecond is the time interval between the time the light turns green and the guy behind you blasts his horn

• You can’t buy anything without asking for a discount

A friend, just to the left of Tom, who DID get to meet him - AND he's following her on Twitter!

• You expect all stores to stay open till midnight

• You make left turns from the far right lane

• You send friends a map instead of your address

• You think it’s perfectly normal to have a picnic in the middle of a roundabout at 11pm

• You know exactly how much alcohol allowance you have left for the month

• You never say Saturday instead of Friday or Sunday instead of Saturday

• You accept that there is no point in asking why you are not allowed to do something

• You expect queues to be 1 person deep and 40 people wide

• You realise that the black and white stripes on the road are not a zebra crossing, just bait to get tourists into the firing line

• You carry 12 passport-size photos around with you just in case

• You overtake a police car at 130 km/h. And don’t worry about it

• When a problem with your car’s air-conditioning or horn is more serious to you than a problem with the brakes


About Circles in the Sand

Sun worshiper, journalist, mother, pilot's wife and distracted housewife living in the land of glitz and sand
This entry was posted in Dubai, Expat and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to 20 signs you live in the Middle East

  1. MsCaroline says:

    Ha, this is great! Some of them could have been written here in Seoul, especially the car-related ones. And we all send maps, too – no one can find anything with a street address!

  2. Pia says:

    Hilarious as always Marianne!!! You should publish all your blogs as a book! Or send them off to some magazine!!!

    • Thank you Pia! This one I did just steal off Facebook! Thank you for reading my blog and I do appreciate your kind comments! It would be amazing if one day something came of it, but there are so many good blogs out there. It’s a fun hobby to have, don’t you think!

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