gonna go ahead and apologize for typos and grammar issues in advance .. I'm typing this out very quickly .. here's the latest:
okay .. so it's official, we are going to get that house .. now that I know we're going to live there, I'm excited about how we'll make it work! I can't wait to take pictures and show the progress of our move-in. As soon as we know we can move in, we're going to head to IKEA and get beds and a kitchen table .. we'll also need to figure out appliances since those don't come w/ the house. That way we can at least start living there!
Okay, so if you looked at the floor plan, you probably noticed the maid's room ... yeah, a MAID'S ROOM. All of the homes have them. It's soo foreign to me. Most of the people that we've spoken to about the maid thing have really encouraged us to "just do it" and get a live-in maid. After seeing the rooms that they are set up with in the homes, it's so hard to picture having someone that is our maid living in those quarters. Their bathroom, in the homes that we saw yesterday, consists of a toilet, a sink, and a shower head .. no separate shower ... just a sprayer connected to the wall .. I'll take a picture and post it asap. The room is about the size of our walk-in closet at 17 Red Locust (which was quite large for a closet, but would be super small for a living area). It feels cruel to ask someone to live there.
I hear that it's a courtesy to their culture. I hear that we're providing them and their families a means to live - and by working for us (a family that cares for human beings) they will be set up very well and it will be a very good situation for them. It's still so hard for me to grasp .. I feel guilty and lazy even desiring a live-in maid. But seriously .. how great would it be to have someone helping us out. Out here, it's very affordable, and very, very normal. weird.
HOWEVER .. you should have heard our relocation woman talking about her maid yesterday. I was floored. First, I have to tell you that Chantelle is a very nice woman from South Africa, and has had a live-in maid all of her life. She reveres her parents for raising her with responsibility; that even though she had someone cleaning up after her, her parents did not allow her to take advantage. Chantelle is wonderful, but in my opinion, has a skewed vision of human beings. She spoke of her live-in help like a dog breed; I know, harsh. She was talking about how her Sri Lankan (sp?) house-maid was horrible .. going on and on about Sri Lankan people having poor hygiene, poor English, poor ironing skills, they couldn't cook well .. it was like she was referring to breed of people .. it was a bit nauseating, and definitely eye-opening. She then went on to say that her new, Filipino maid was wonderful .. and then complimented all of the wonderful things about the Filipino (breed) women. I just can't identify with that mindset.
So .. will we get a maid? probably. As long as I can view it the right way. From what I hear, it is how they support their families. A woman will send a son or daughter off to a country like Dubai and find work and accommodations to send back to support their family. If I view it as a means to help a family, I would be honored to hire someone. It's a stretch, but kind-of feels like supporting a child via Compassion, just in our own home. OOOOH, this is soo new!!!
Okay, I need to get moving .. we've been unpacking and hanging out in the hotel room all morning.. time to go out and grab some lunch and groceries! I'll take pictures of the teeny grocery store by our hotel and figure out how to post them. If you have facebook, I've posted pics on my fb page already.
p.s. random issues: Mark has been trying to get a rental car .. soo many hoops to jump through .. passport photos, copies of passports, UAE driver's license required .. how do we get one .. getting cell phones is a whole different obstacle course .. I'm so glad we knew that we'd run into these things .. otherwise I think we'd be going completely crazy. It'll happen ... it just takes time. :)