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Cold feet re Dubai

(35 Posts)
Starmummy Thu 28-Dec-06 15:58:27

OK so now its real and the days are just whizzing by. DH contract was finalised 12th Dec, he handed his notice in and finshes 12th Jan and flies out 14th Jan! Gulp it all seems so quick. DS and I are going out at the end of jan to visit schools and try to sort a house before we go out for good in Feb half term.
Now I feel really scared, I think with Christmas and the IL's staying for a week (who incidentally are in complete denial about the whole thing), my DM staying at the same time, more vistors yesterday after the others had just left, (its like having revolving doors lol). In between I had 3 removal co's for quotes and have just emailed them to dubai, no answer from there till at least Tuesday as its Eid. Arranging big leaving party - 174 guests ;0 for 5th jan. Everything is so close and happening so quickly. All I can think about is DS doing entrance exams, starting after all the jan intake of new kids, not making new friends, oh gosh its upsetting me all over again. DH is v excited about the opportunity and his new shredder which is working overtime. We have a skip coming on Sat for all the real junk. Have already sent 2 bags to Blue Peter and 28 bags to bag2skool. I'm in such a panic I dont know where to start. Help me please to keep sane.......

jampots Thu 28-Dec-06 16:02:49

sounds very exciting

Well done for organising (or at least thinking about organising) everything.

I have a pal in Dubai. Where abouts are you moving to? Are you moving with work?

Starmummy Thu 28-Dec-06 16:23:31

Hi Jampots
DH is moving with work. he is excited as he is curently bored to peices with his current job. As for where we will be living, I suspect in somewhere like the Springs or the Meadows. We need somewhere close to Media City where DH will be working. Most expats seem to be based in New Dubai (as I think its refered to from my research). I'd like to have a house where there other kids the sme age as DS so he can play out when it isnt searing heat or at least stop over with other kids for playstation and stuff. I'm really worried he wont make any friends - I'm worried about me to as at least he will have a chance at school whereas I wont have a job and with him being 11 its not as if you do all that standing at the school gates stuff to meet other mums. Gulp again. And then I look around the house and think how can I do all this by 15th Jan!!!!!!
I'm glas you think I'm organising, some positive stuff really helps me to keep going. Does your pal have kids? And have you been to visit? You really must get out there and try it out. Its a very bold and brash city with lots of hidden gems. See now I'm all excited again. Sigh....

jampots Thu 28-Dec-06 17:12:52

it sounds wonderful starmummy

my friend doesnt have children. He's a pilot with Emirates, his wife i think works in a hotel. Im seeing him next week for the first time since he went over there so will ask if he can put you in touch with any of his friends-with-kids-the-same-age or if he knows of anything you can do.

I would love to see the place but Im terrified of flying In fact many years ago I made him take me to Dublin to try and get over my fear of flying - i dont think he has ever been so embarrassed in his life

Starmummy Thu 28-Dec-06 17:40:30

Oh Jampots, I feel for you,[hugs] dh doesnt like flying and ds is very cruel saying things like oh the engines making a funny noise or there's a flame coming out the back etc. I do try to stop him but it really doesnt work.

It would be lovely if your friend did have anyone with children who might like to email my DS age 11, year 6. Esp if any parents have off the record comments about the schools as well. It seems to be a hot topic thre just like it is here lol.

Hopefully one day you will feel able to travel by plane and visit some of the wonderful places out there.

jampots Thu 28-Dec-06 17:43:21

in fact starmummy. if you could cat me or email me on then i wont sound so weird !

Starmummy Thu 28-Dec-06 18:12:35

Thanks jampots, have emailed you.

jampots Sat 30-Dec-06 19:18:12

starmummy - ive sent a copy of his reply to my email to you. Hope it helps

MABS Sat 30-Dec-06 19:23:34

we may be doing the same thing in 2007, at the mo I'm in the excited stage tho!! i have a dd and ds, we got to dubai a lot and i love it there. good luk xx

Starmummy Sun 31-Dec-06 18:52:41

Thanks Mabs,
I hope you do get to go. It would be lovely to meet another mn person ;) I think I'm still at the excited stage, although a little bit :~( as we have a skip on the drive and we have been chucking out for England and even dubai! V sad looking thru all the old baby clothes, still pastures new and all that.

Jampots, havent even looked at emails for days its seems, have finally got rid of all the visitors and the washing machine has now stopped working, wont spin so cant open door. Sigh, all that bedding and towels and the house looks just like a tip. I guess this is how it will from now onwards. Gulp cant beleive that DH leaves 2 weeks today and our leaving party is next Friday!! Hooray, much excitement although I know I shall cry bucket loads.

Oooh just too much to think about before partying tonight.
Have a fantastic new year everyone
Love Starmummy

MABS Sun 31-Dec-06 20:53:49

good luck Starmummy x

inthepink Sat 06-Jan-07 06:32:40

Hi Starmummy, have only just seen this post, I live in Dubai and work in a school as a TA in year 6!! There is always so many children coming and going so I'm sure your ds won't feel left out the other children are quite used to all the comings and goings and he will soon make friends. As for you, there are a lot of coffee mornings at various locations through out Dubai organised by the expatwoman website, once you have settled in why not go along to one of them, I was lucky as my ds wasn't quite 2 when we moved here so went along to playgroups and made friends that way and I have temped quite a lot before getting the school job so met lots of people that way, most people are quite friendly, don't forget we have all been there done that so we know what's like.

inthepink Sat 06-Jan-07 06:33:32

If you would like to meet when you are here in Feb just let me know.

Starmummy Sun 07-Jan-07 21:12:35

Thanks in the Pink. I would love to meet. I'm not sure exactly when we are comming. DH had confimation this morning of his ticket for next sunday and for the removal company we are to use. When he gets there he will have a drive around and see the areas for houses and what the schools look like. Are you alloed to say which school you teach at? And do you have any year 6 vacancies? It all seems to be such a difficult decision. Just today I have been trawling the websites for more info re schools. should I put him in a school that goes straight thru to avoid another change or will it give him the opportunity to change if he doesnt like it. Decisions decisions.
I have been a frequent lurker on expat woman and will be straight off to one of their coffee mornings, or maybe more than one to maximise my options lol.
See you soon!!! gulp it all seems to be rushing towards me full pelt.

inthepink Wed 10-Jan-07 07:35:01

I work at Dubai English Speaking School or DESS for short, most schools are abbreviated to initals usually because their names are so long, think they may have a couple of vacancies but not too sure, but can check later for you if you would like although it is in old Dubai and it is one of the oldest schools here!! 5 form entry with about 20 - 23 kids each class

Starmummy Wed 10-Jan-07 10:17:00

Hi Inthepink,
Thanks for that info. I had considered Dess but I think - using my trusty copy of the dubai explorer- that it maybe too far from Internet city where my husband will be working. I think year 6 must be an under subscribed year as almost every school I have spoken to has vacancies?!?
I will catch up later, have been doing this whilst booking flights for DS and myself to visit in Jan. Have used all my airmiles, hooray.


jampots Wed 10-Jan-07 10:20:27

starmummy - i met with my pal on sunday. The tales of some rent hikes are mindblowing. Are you going to be in company rented accomodation or private renting? In fact I'll email you

Starmummy Thu 11-Jan-07 11:21:22

Hi Jampots
No we wont be in company accomodation but we do have an allowance, however it isnt enough as far as I'm concerned to get me an equivilant house to what we live in now. So we will be funding part of the cost ourselves !
DH leaves on sunday, the leaving party was a huge sucess, have booked tickets for ds and I to go for the week 25th jan to sort house and school. New international bank accounts sorted (allegedly), wills written and filed. It seems never ending, poor DS is shattered, as we keep working thru the night he cant get to sleep and I think he is worried about his dad going by himself (ahhh) although he says he is quite happy, I do think there are some underlying worries which I try to address.
Look forward to your email.

meowmix Thu 11-Jan-07 11:27:32

Hi Starmummy

I'm in Qatar which is about 30 mins from Dubai but go there regularly for work. Its a huge culture shock initially but once you get over the first 3 weeks (which are exhausting) you'll find its really not that different in many ways. Tends to be that you get a slump and lump of homesickness at 3 months and then once through that its ok. I've been here 6 months and can't imagine going back to the UK.

The Gulf is truly fascinating and you'll quickly meet people. Take your time to get to know the area and you'll be fine, just remember you aren't on holiday so don't have to see everything in week 1!

Plus think of the travel opps - you'll be close to amazing places like Oman, Jordan, Thailand, Seychelles, Mauritius etc. Its worth planning a 'gulf break' after 6 months to recharge your batteries - when you go somewhere non Arab just for the change.

If you need any other advice feel free to CAT me or em at alicatsg at hotmail . com

meowmix Thu 11-Jan-07 11:29:20

sory another thought on DH being away first - I left cards with specific activities for DH and DS to do while I was away ahead of them (like look up qatar on the map, draw a camel, ask Daddy to take you swimming). Really helped them both feel I was part of the equation still!

Starmummy Thu 11-Jan-07 12:18:54


DH has been offered work in qatar prev however he turned it down, he had worked for BT for 23 years, took voluntary redundancy but then felt a bit institusionalised (sp?). However now he is confident he can cope with anything anywhere!!!! Loved the idea about leaving cards and notes to do things. Ds will like that, he looked so pale this morning - a serious lack of sleep, he hasnt got over christmas and new year yet, what with scout camp inbetween, leaving party etc.
I think you are right about it isnt a holiday so you do need a different mindset, it doesnt all have to be done today.

Have already told my mum and the in -laws we will be away for christmas, I can feel the maldives calling me already lol. DS has already looked at the oman dive centre on the web apparently from his research the swimming and camping are excellent ! I'm glad he is still seeing it as an awfully big adventure, and of course everyone is saying were comming to visit, so I think he will be ok. Just me then to make friends, expatwoman coffee mornings here I come , then I'll need to think about a job, but maybe later tee hee.

I'm glad you still like it and I appreciate the honesty of the 3 month slump, I guess you cant really prepare for it but I am concentrating on remembering today, the rain is horizontal, it is freezing and has been grey outside for weeks.

Thanks for keeping me going

meowmix Thu 11-Jan-07 12:25:15

Qatar is like Dubai was 5 years ago (or so am told). Which would mean dusty and a building site!

Bahrain is lovely too by the way, very relaxed feel I found. Also I hear great things about Kuwait. Warn your DH that we're having an unusual cold snap at the moment, he won't be needing his trunks just yet.

The heat in August is a complete shock, you will not fully comprehend it until you experience it. For this reason its the best time to go back to Blighty and revel in their chilly 28 degrees heatwave.

Oh and be prepared to be driven mad by the bureaucracy here. If they can overcomplicate something they will.

And while i remember -hot news from Dubai today is that they're building a 39 storey building in the shape of a man in dishdasha. You have to love a country that comes up with ideas like that.

Starmummy Thu 11-Jan-07 12:41:31

Lol at the new building, still chuckling, cant wait to see it.

Today is just so bad I think I could almost welcome the summer heat ( just kidding I know its terrible). Dh is not happy at being abandoned for the 9 week summer hols I can tell you. will prob send DS (11) home by himself to stay with friends and family and catch up with him a bit later. I think DH could take to the bachelor life a bit oo easily all that beer, sport and no housework or shopping!!!
In all seriousness does DH need a coat over and above a work jacket or does he need jumpers, sweat shirts? I'm not sure if all expats idea of a cold snap is anything less than 80 degrees?

meowmix Thu 11-Jan-07 14:24:40

its about 15 degrees in the day and down to about 2-3 at night. What you have to understand is that houses here are a) all marble floors and b) have air con but no heating so it does get cold in the evenings.

Cold water tanks are usually outside the houses here and in the summer you can turn off the hot water altogether....

jampots Thu 11-Jan-07 14:45:34

apparently there's also a ski slope within a shopping mall somewhere - sounds awesome

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