Back to my Saudi Home…

October 23, 2015 roughly…

When I moved to Saudi Arabia for the first time, I was terrified sitting on the plane on the tarmac in Riyadh… having absolutely no idea what was ahead for me… worried about the logistics of arrival… would they let me through immigrations? What if there was a problem with my paperwork?! How would I find the rest of my group and the hospital rep? What if my abaya wasn’t good enough? And when do I put it on yet too?! I’d definitely not worn it the whole flight from Frankfurt to Riyadh and had to struggle into it in my seat on the plane on the tarmac in Riyadh…

This time around… there was none of that anxiety though. I knew that immigrations would be the friendliest and easiest immigrations I’d ever gone through in any airport. If there wasn’t a hospital rep there for me, well at least I had a functioning Saudi phone number and contact info and even knew how to get to the hospital from the airport…

Plus… I have friends and connections in Saudi now. Surely someone would come to my rescue!

Turns out that one of my friends from hockey was the one to actually pick me up. It was so great to see a friendly, familiar face on arrival! They dropped me off at my new apartment… and I promptly showered off a day of travel and changed to go out to a party some friends were holding. It’s an excellent antidote to the loneliness and homesickness that would have set it otherwise on arrival back in Saudi!

It was seriously so amazing to see everyone and catch up… get right back into the swing of things! I missed these people!

I absolutely loved being home. But… people didn’t understand or relate to my experiences in Saudi. Everyone was always so interested. But they couldn’t quite grasp what it was like to live in Saudi and to love living in Saudi. They didn’t understand the drive to return to Saudi. But these people… my Saudi family… they get it. So it was like coming home. Well, to my second home, my international home.

I landed on a Friday night, had Saturday to relax and unpack and everything… pick up my boxes from my old apartment… and Sunday I was back to work. No time to get over jetlag :S And… I had a couple days of re-orientation period… time to get new scrubs and such… and then it was back to the grindstone working regular hours and everything.

But fortunately… the first week or so back was filled with dinners and parties and getting caught up with everyone again… hockey games… and an epic Rugby final with my kiwi friends watching the All Blacks absolutely dominate!!

But still… despite being busy… I was ridiculously homesick this time! Everytime I saw some cute little person in the hospital, I nearly started crying thinking of my nieces and how much I missed them already…

So I continued to fill my time, started running a lot, and found new projects to work on to keep me occupied and keep my mind off how much I missed my family! More to come on those projects…

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