What this blogger is up to lately …
Being surrounded by lush green trees, beautiful people, and the excitement of being in a new place is what’s keeping me from blogging these days. Masood and I are in Boston for almost a month now, and I’m enjoying every single moment of my stay here.
It may take me a few more days to get back to my blogging routine as well as reading all the wonderful posts from my favorite bloggers from around the world, however, I will post a few pictures on what I’ve been up to lately.
Masood and I are going crazy about how much cheaper branded clothing items and cosmetics are in the US as compared to the UAE! The picture above was taken at Wrentham Village Premium Outlet Mall. This place is almost an hour drive away from Boston but totally worth the visit!
Another thing that I am very impressed with is the quality of customer service here. The sales associates will always greet you with a smile, ask how you’re doing, are very helpful and polite. I was telling Masood we should send some of these nice people over to train our sales associates in the UAE.
In the beginning it was pretty annoying: the speed limit on most roads is akin to walking and it really tested my patience. Most roads (including those with speed limits of 65 miles/hour) do not have street lights so it gets completely dark at night. Also, the rule of turning left on a junction on a green light felt so strange. I mean, you take a left turn only when the light is green, however there’s also traffic coming from the other road, so you position yourself to turn left but wait for the oncoming traffic to clear up.
After a few days, however, we finally got used to it. It has come to a point where we are actually enjoying driving in the US. Most of the drivers are very courteous. I haven’t seen anyone flash their headlights or honk their horns impatiently on the roads.
It’s hard bring a Muslim in the US because you can’t simply go to any restaurant and order whatever you feel like eating. Sure, there are halal restaurants, but it’s when I’m truly hungry (and craving for a big chunk of sirloin steak) that I miss the UAE. It broke my heart, a few days ago, when I bought a gorgeous piece of cheesecake but couldn’t eat it because it contained beef gelatin.
Vegetarian pizzas are very good though, much better than what we have in the UAE. When we ordered our first pizza here, we were shocked at the huge size.
I’ve been eating a lot of seafood lately. The picture above was my dinner a few days ago, at a halal restaurant in Waltham (Moody Street). This place is our favorite.
This may sound strange to some of you, but I have never seen blue potato chips up until a few days ago. I was so fascinated I took pictures! These were the complimentary chips we got aboard JetBlue airlines. For those who haven’t had blue chips before: they taste just like your regular potato chips.
Masood has family in Houston. We went to visit them a couple of weeks ago, and it was during this brief visit that we got invited to attend a very lavish engagement party. Even though I was meeting everyone for the first time, it was a fun evening.
Masood and I are mainly here for work. The picture above is just one part of the building where our offices are located. The place is nice and quiet, and our home is just 5-minute walk away. It is such a great relief not having to drive back and forth to work.
Our home away from home. It’s a very lovely place – furnished apartment, complete with kitchen utensils (although I rarely cook here). Someone comes to clean our room once a week and the washing machines/dryers are located ten feet away. So that even though we go to office every day and there’s so much to accomplish, I hardly feel tired because I don’t have any house work to do.
This is my latest obsession. I eat this hummus every single day with almost everything. Masood is amazed at how I am not actually getting tired of eating this same stuff with every meal.
I am also obsessed with orange juice here. Not sure why, but OJ here tastes much better than what we have in the UAE.
Oh, and I’m suddenly obsessed about buying cosmetics here. I bought a Bobby Brown liquid foundation a few weeks ago but my skin reacted to it so I went reluctantly back to the mall to return it. They actually took the used product back without asking any questions!
US has an amazing return policy that should totally be implemented in the UAE! Anyway, so I returned the product back and bought another foundation. Unfortunately, my skin reacted to that too, so I had to return it as well. I felt so bad returning the product, but the sales associate was like, “Hey, don’t worry about it!” I finally asked the nice lady at Sephora to give me a couple of samples to try first so that I don’t have to return a whole bottle.
I have so many pictures, food, and stories to share with you. I am now traveling to New Jersey (still work related) but I’ll try to ease back into blogging more regularly now.