I’ll be honest, the Middle East was never a region I had ever really thought about visiting – you hear over-hyped media stories about the goings on in “that part of the world”, assume stereotypes to be true and believe there’s nothing much to see outside the sprawling monster that is Dubai.
Well. If my year living and working in Kuwait taught me nothing else, it taught me how wrong the rest of the world is and how damaging and scarily inaccurate western media can be…
Summer 2013. I, like thousands of others, had just finished University. Job hunting dominated my time and the frustrating realisation that an undergraduate degree isn’t worth as much as it used to sunk in further by the day.
Then one weekend in August a good friend of ours, Nikki, told my Mum that the school she was due to start working at in Kuwait was still hiring, that they accepted unqualified teachers (though you must have a degree) and suggested maybe I should apply…exactly what I ended up doing. The rest, as they say, is history. I applied for the job one day, googled Kuwait to see where it actually was the next and was flying somewhere over Iraq two weeks later.
In the year that followed I experienced many MANY things that would shock me, enlighten me, educate me and above all create some of the best opportunities I’ve ever had in my life. Not to mention the friends I would make.
Sure it had its low points – the worst being caused by one or two fellow ex-pats, unsurprisingly – but after all is said and done I look back on my time there with fond memories and a strange yearning to one day go back. Certainly, I wish to explore more Middle Eastern countries in the future.
For now though, check out my memories of: