Monday, April 30, 2012

Typical School in Jeddah


It's taken me a while to be able to spot schools here in Jeddah. Most look nothing at all like the schools I am used to seeing in the states. Many of the schools in KSA seem to be old residential villas that have been converted into schools. I have read many complaints about the school system here in Saudi Arabia, especially when it comes to girls' education. There are many who would like to see more a focus on academics instead of religious education.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sasquatch of Arabia?

I was recently sitting in a waiting area of a local hospital here in Jeddah and the African woman seated next to me was wearing these furry thongs and the tips of her toes were hennaed in black. I had never seen anything like it before. It looked pretty grisly to me...

Saturday, April 28, 2012

IMC - Lovely Hospital in Jeddah

This is an exterior shot of the beautiful International Medical Center (IMC) in Jeddah. It was designed by famed Saudi architect Sami Angawi. The interior is as lovely as the exterior.

Friday, April 27, 2012

SkyWatch: Yellow Mosque

I’ve never seen a mosque such a bright color as this one! This is a brand new mosque near downtown Jeddah. I’m guessing that it was built by a businessman who also built the matching colored apartment building behind and to the left of the mosque. It’s likely that he and his family will live in the new apartment building and the man will be able to easily attend prayers there. Many businessmen pay for new mosques to be built around the country as a way of giving back to the community.

To visit MORE friendly skies around the world, fly on over to SKYWATCH where you'll find beautiful skies posted by bloggers all over the world.
Skywatch Friday


Thursday, April 26, 2012

Minaret Topper Shop

Mosques are distinctive by their minarets. Most minarets are topped off with a crescent moon shape, which has come to symbolize Islam. The crescent moon plays an important role in the religion. The sighting of the new crescent moon with the naked eye marks the end of Ramadan, the month long fasting period when Muslims do not eat or drink during the daylight hours.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Artwork

This piece of art was part of a display of the Young Saudi Artists group, which recently had an exhibition at the Athr Gallery in Jeddah. To see more of the unique and interesting art that was featured, please see this post on my other blog, Susie’s Big Adventure.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Our World: Red Okay if NOT Valentine's Day

Normally you can see this type of merchandise in shops all over Saudi Arabia, but in February of each year around Valentine’s Day, there is a ban on selling items such as this. This year alone, religious police arrested over 140 people for celebrating Valentine’s Day. The religious police have historically banned products that come in red – such as roses, teddy bears, lingerie, heart shaped chocolate boxes, etc. – in an effort to prevent people from expressing their love for one another on this pagan holiday. I have written more about this subject on my other blog, Susie’s Big Adventure, in these posts: Valentine’s Day Massacre and Happy Valentine’s Day…or Not!

Be sure to visit OUR WORLD TUESDAY, where family-friendly bloggers share a unique glimpse into what life is like all around our ever-amazing planet.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Incense at Storefront

You can see huge incense burners like these outside many stores and shops in Jeddah. Usually there are smaller incense burners on top of ones like these where the incense is burned. People like to stop by and wave the smoke into their clothing. Many Saudi homes also have incense burning as well.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Friday, April 20, 2012

SkyWatch: Huge Complex

Today’s photos are of a huge complex that is being built near downtown Jeddah. The above photo shows a part of the project which is still under construction. The photo below shows another part of the project which shows what the finished product will look like when it is complete. I’m not whether this enormous complex will house offices or what, but it will certainly be an attractive addition to the area.

To visit MORE friendly skies around the world, fly on over to SKYWATCH where you'll find beautiful skies posted by bloggers all over the world.
Skywatch Friday


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Rafting at the Mall

Most large malls here in Jeddah have full scale family entertainment centers. The Mall of Arabia’s play area includes a rock climbing wall, various rides, water rafting, and a soon to be open Snow Village. There are not many activities that families can do together in Saudi Arabia – they cannot attend sporting events or go to the movies together – so malls rank very high on the list for family entertainment.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Looks Like a Full Bar

At first glance, one might assume that this resembles a fully stocked bar. However in Saudi Arabia, alcoholic beverages of any kind are strictly forbidden by religious law. Popular beverages here include sodas, coffee and tea, and a variety of fruit juices the likes of which you have never seen.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Our World: Adding On

It is common for additions to existing buildings in Jeddah to be built upwards, adding on more floors as it becomes affordable to the building’s owner.

Be sure to visit OUR WORLD TUESDAY, where family-friendly bloggers share a unique glimpse into what life is like all around our ever-amazing planet.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Hot Apple Seeder

English grammatical and spelling errors are commonly seen around Jeddah on menus, maps, and signage, where of course the native language is Arabic.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Red

This is a beautiful restaurant/shop in the Mall of Arabia. I love the clean lines, the lighting, and the use of the red and black.

Friday, April 13, 2012

SkyWatch: In the Ghetto

Jeddah is a modern city with lots of new construction everywhere, but the city also has some very old and rundown areas as well. Many of the poor foreign workers live in places like this. Though you can’t see them in this photo, even places like this are not without their satellite dishes. Just a few blocks away is an area with beautiful walled villas and a very large, beautiful, and popular shopping mall.

To visit MORE friendly skies around the world, fly on over to SKYWATCH where you'll find beautiful skies posted by bloggers all over the world.
Skywatch Friday



Thursday, April 12, 2012

Just Hangin' Out

I was waiting in the car for my husband when I looked over and saw this group of young men just hanging out. The man in the traditional dress seemed a little older and was dominating the conversation. All of a sudden he started dancing around and the young men loved it. It would be unusual to see girls hanging out in public like this here in Saudi Arabia.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Nice Building

Sorry I don’t know what this building is, but it’s very nicely maintained and is located near downtown Jeddah.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Our World: Busy Signs and Store Fronts

In Jeddah, many shops that offer similar products and services are often right next door to one another for blocks and blocks. My theory is that because of the close proximity of these similar businesses, it causes the signage and storefronts to scream for attention to make it stand out from the competition. However with all of these shops using this same strategy, all it really serves to do is to make the businesses look cluttered. Many of them have their signage in both Arabic and English, which takes up more room to begin with, and many of them also add graphics for the significant part of the population that may not be able to read either language.
Many shops repeat the same graphics over and over. Sometimes it makes me dizzy to look at these busy looking cluttered shop signs.

Be sure to visit OUR WORLD TUESDAY, where family-friendly bloggers share a unique glimpse into what life is like all around our ever-amazing planet.


Monday, April 9, 2012

Which Way?

Many street corners in Saudi Arabia have signs similar to this one. I've never cared much for signs like this because I feel like I never have enough time to completely read all of them. I prefer the big signs above the street that are visible from a much further distance so I have time to read them.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Cool Sign for Thobe Shop

The thobe (or thawb) is the long usually white dress that many Saudi men wear. Most Saudi men probably have at least a dozen thobes hanging in their closets, especially those who wear thobes to work. Most thobes shops will custom-make thobes tailored to each customer. There are many fabrics to choose from, as well as variations in styles like the collar, cuffs, buttons, pockets, embroidery, etc. Thobes usually have big hidden pockets on each side where men can keep their wallets, keys, mobile phones, and lipstick (just kidding - I was seeing if you were paying attention!).

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Pretty New Mosque

This is another beautiful new mosque that has just been completed near downtown Jeddah. I love the details of the arches, the minaret, and the dome and the color choice. In Jeddah, there are mosques every few blocks, and even more frequently than that in some areas. The construction industry continues to boom here in Jeddah with no signs on stopping. There is new construction everywhere around the city.


Friday, April 6, 2012

SkyWatch: Dusty Days

This year the wind and resulting dust storms have been the absolute worst and the windy season has lasted much longer than it has since I moved here in 2007. Hospitals have been filled with people suffering from asthma or other breathing problems. Thick layers of dust have covered everything in sight. There have been no cleansing rains to wash away the dust or settle it down. Many days the skies have been a brown haze with not a patch of blue visible anywhere. On the worst days, schools were closed and many people just stayed home because visibility on the streets was so poor. On really bad days, it is not unusual to see many people wearing surgical masks over their faces.

To visit MORE friendly skies around the world, fly on over to SKYWATCH where you'll find beautiful skies posted by bloggers all over the world.
Skywatch Friday

Thursday, April 5, 2012

New White Mosque

This new white mosque has just finished completion near downtown Jeddah. Beautiful, isn't it? I had published a photo of this same mosque in the process of being built a while back. If you'd like to compare photos, here's the link of the older post.