Friday, March 22, 2013

Getaway to Bahrain

During our three-day weekend, we headed off to Bahrain for the night. Bahrain is the place where all the expats go as it's easy to cross the border, and it is much more liberal than Saudi Arabia. Women do not have to wear abbayas, you can order a drink at a hotel, and I hear there is even pork available. Having been here 8 months now, I think we were the last people in the Kingdom to make it to there. It was definitely worth the wait as we loved the tiny country!

Crossing over was gorgeous! The bluest of water contrasted against the sand-colored rocks was an amazing sight. We had to cross a long bridge first to get to the first immigration and then many, many more stops along the way before another long bridge into Bahrain. 

It is common in Bahrain for hotels to be attached to malls, and so we stayed in a spacious place that allowed us to go eat in the mall and do some shopping. These artsy, cool camels were placed all over the parking lot. 

Sojo was in love with these tigers (she seemed to think they were dogs, but that does not look like a dog to me) that you paid to ride around for 15 minutes. She powered it by gassing a pedal, and it was beyond comical to see her cruising around. Super fun. 

Our big plan in Bahrain was to go to Wahoo water park, an indoor water extravaganza that we have been hearing about from all the kids in Saudi. Sojo normally only wears a very long swimsuit that covers most of her body, but we somehow convinced her to wear this one. She was slightly freaking out at how small it is, and she suddenly turned all girlie when she put it on. Ballet dancing, posing, and other stunts that had us all cracking up. 

About that water park...before moving to Saudi, I switched to one-piece bathing suits as this is required of women even on our compound. I even bought one with a skirt on it to be more modest. However, it took me only a few minutes to notice at the water park that no women were in the water, only men. The only woman I saw was this woman in pink. Head-to-toe hot pink, and that was her swimsuit. Of course, Muslim women are going to be very modest when swimming, but somehow what I thought was me being modest suddenly looked very...well...immodest. I had to just deal with it and go on the water slides with Sojo, but it was uncomfortable. Much like what I imagine I would feel like in the US if I wore the hot pink outfit to the pool. 

On the way back from Bahrain today, we met up with some friends at this gorgeous beach near their house. The weather was great, the kids had a great time, and there was a whole school of dolphins showing off for us in the water. 

And, just because no trip is complete without a camel photo, here is the latest. I have asked Dale to now always stop on the side of the road if we see some close to the highway. They take our breath away every single time. Add a Hipstamatic touch and a desert sunset, and it's the perfect end to a great weekend. 

And we still have one more day off! Perfection! 


Anonymous said...

What fun....what fun....beach, pool, shopping, camels and that cutie in the swim suit. Love it all.

Love, Mom and Dad

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great trip with new experiences. I love how you share your feelings with us. The pictures are great! Love Nie Nie