Oman Trip: Visiting Al Jaylah Beehive Tombs

We were lucky that the car, Toyota Land Cruiser, was just the right car for this kind of exploration. There are some roads where I thought normal cars would just go backwards and might even slip and fall off the cliff.

Omanis who live in the mountains were very friendly and they showed us the right direction when we almost got lost. We even saw some kids approaching our car and they were asking for chocolate.

“Hello. Fi shokolata?” said this local kid when we passed by their home.

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Oman Trip: The Road Trip

Jogging with this view in the morning

Day two in Oman began with a morning jog near the beach in Qurum. We went out for jogging at 6.00 AM and finished around 7.10 AM. It was really something since I didn’t remember when was the last time I did exercise. I met another runner with his dog. The dog’s name was Boy and he was very friendly. “Good boy,” I said while petting him. One day I will have a dog of my own.

After the jogging, we went to Costa for a simple breakfast and then went back to the resort to pack our things. It’s time to get going, today is the the road trip day! Continue reading →

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Oman Trip: The First Day

I recently had a 4-day trip to Oman during my days off. Since the airline that I am working for doesn’t have a direct flight to Muscat on August 15, I flew there with Oman Air. The aircraft was Boeing 737-800, small cabin with single aisle. And the overhead compartments were even smaller than that of Airbus 320 that I am qualified for.

There were two cabin crew working at economy class on that day, one male crew and one female. I talked to the male crew, an Omani guy named Yakoub, who was very friendly and polite. The service was hot meal with 2 choices, but I didn’t eat and only take the water cup. Yakoub was very kind to give me another cup of water even when I didn’t even ask for it and he repeatedly ask me whether or not I need something. Continue reading →

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Bookshop Review: The Bookworm in Dhaka, Bangladesh

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Recently I flew to Dhaka, Bangladesh and had a 26-hour layover there. Most crew when flying to Dhaka told me that they just remain at the hotel, not going out as it is considered dangerous for ladies to go outside unaccompanied. But I was curious about this hustling city that hosts a lot of ready-made garment factories for fashion brands from all over the world.

I was googling about places to go in Dhaka. There are several local tourist attractions that look interesting, but unfortunately none of the crew wanted to go out with me. Since I’m going out by myself, there are only two places that I’d likely go to; either a cinema or a bookstore. Unfortunately, I was there on Tuesday and every Tuesday a lot of places in Dhaka are closed.

“Government decision, Madam,” said an uber driver named Saiful Islam when I asked him why Jamuna Future Park, the biggest mall in Bangladesh, was closed. He also said that not only the malls that were closed, but a lot of other tourism attractions, too. His English was so limited that he had to explain the rest in his native language, which of course I didn’t understand.

I remembered that before the flight I was browsing about local bookstores in the city, so I opened my browsing history and there I found The Bookworm. Continue reading →

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A Visit To Khalil Gibran’s Hometown

Who doesn’t know Gibran Khalil Gibran? He was one of the most famous poets in the Arab world and known as the third best-selling poets after Shakespeare and Lao-tzu. My first encounter with his poems was when I was still a high school student, in May 2004, one of my classmates gave me “The Prophet” by Khalil Gibran as a birthday present. At that time I was into beautiful words by Shakespeare and Emily Dickinson. Getting a book by Khalil Gibran was a turning point in my life that would later drive me to study literature in university.

The Lebanese-American artist was born in Bcharreh, Mount Lebanon on January 6, 1883. Gibran and his sisters, Mariana and Sultana, were brought to United States by his mother in 1895 for a better living. During his lifetime Gibran studied in Boston and Paris and he was known for his poems and paintings. But in his last days, Gibran requested to be buried in his birthplace in Bcharreh. I was wondering why didn’t he want to be buried in the states, where he spent most of his lifetime… So I went to Gibran Museum, which also serves as his final resting place, during my trip to Lebanon. Continue reading →

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Visiting Aviation Museum in Riyadh

On one of my days off recently, I went to Saqr Al Jazeera Aviation Museum which is located in East Ring Road, Riyadh, around 19 km from the compound where I’m living in. After two years living in the capital city, this was my first time ever going out not for flight duty or mall-hopping, so I was really excited!

At the front gate which is visible from the streets outside, people can see the L-1011 Tristar aircraft with the old Saudia livery on its body. I used to wonder what’s inside this museum, but never really got a chance to visit it. And now that I actually went there, I got to see how civil and military aviation in Saudi Arabia has developed during the past five decades. Continue reading →

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Regrets


Regrets are regrets. Sometimes it can be prevented from happening, other times it’s just inevitable and there’s no way back. Although we often say to ourselves to live life to the fullest with no regrets, there must be some things in life that we wish we did or did not do. I don’t know about you, but my regrets mostly were things that I didn’t do.

 

Things that I did not have the courage to do, people that I didn’t appreciate enough when they were still with me, and beautiful moments uncaptured that became bittersweet memories.

 

If I could turn back time… I didn’t wish to do things differently. I just wish that I said what I needed to say. For whatever happened after that was something that I couldn’t change or control. But at least, they would know that I did not mean any harm to our friendship or relationship. That I loved them. Unfortunately that love was long gone, undeclared. And we carried on living.

 

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

March 13, 2017

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