Friday, March 27, 2009

Life Changes on a Dime

There is something in the wind right now. Spring? Don't know. Maybe it's just the odor of not showering. But whatever is going on, it is enabling change. I feel it!

I did commit to God to be more serious about my marriage search. The Tunisian that's been flitting in and out of my weeks, is no longer taking my time. I can't. Since that decision was made, I have three very sincere men talking to me.

I am seeing how a wonderful opportunity can change my world in a split second.

Just as I was drying Mr. Boo from "swimming" in the tub (it's all in the marketing, people), I got a strange number calling me on my phone. Yep, I picked it up and discovered it was London calling. I had an immediate interview with one of the agencies I have contacted in my search for overseas employment. This placement would be in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
As I struggled to keep the hair dryer from Mr. Boo's hands, I spoke to Cornelia in the most intelligent way I could. I answered many thought-provoking questions to the best of my abilities, alhumdulillah. I do interview well.

Would I consider teaching at a woman's university? Yesssssssss.

Would I be OK with earning 11,000 Riyals a month? I said, "Yes," and then checked it out. OK, yes, I would!

Oh, and there was additional money towards housing and then some more towards a furniture allowance.

Then there was the promise of flight tickets for me and three dependents. Hey, Reader, wanna get adopted? This sure beats Morocco and Yemen acting like I MIGHT be able to get some money towards air fare for me...but not a thing for Mr. Boo. Oman did offer my air fare, but not his AND they are really dragging their sandalled feet.

And something most Americans could seriously drool over: free medical care.

Interview inshahallah next week with the school.

Next week one of the men is talking about coming out to meet me.

Which do I want? Job? Man? Because, I can't have everything.
I'll tell you what I want. I want what is the best. And I put my trust in Allah.

I am not just going to talk the talk of, "letting go." I need to walk that walk and honestly not try to grab the wheel and force the direction I'm headed. It ain't gonna work any way! I have to use my mind, my heart, my eyes, and ears. I need to make decisions over time for what is the absolute best.

I have five weeks of money. FIVE! FIVE WEEKS! FIVE WEEKS TO HAVE A PLACE! That needs to get sung to the tune of the Subway commercials, of course.
God knows what happens next.

I'm glad somebody does!

Keep reading and I'll tell you when I learn something new.


ellen557 said...

Good luck with everything (L) I hope that salary is per month though? If it is - that is really good!

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Ellen,

Welcome to this place. I don't remember seeing you before :)

OK, I have to ask what's up with the L in the parenthesises? I know that means something--doesn't it?

I should probably have said more about the salary. It's about $2,900 a month. So, that is really good! Especially, when you consider that there is another $4,000 a year housing allowance and another like $2,000 furniture allowance. I think I got that all right.

Thanks for your support!

It would not be until August, so God knows what I would be doing until then.

Faith Confusion said...

I was hoping you made a typo -11000 riyals A YEAR wouldn't go very far..

It's wonderful about the job though. That would be wonderful. Do you mind me asking, what do you teach?

And where is the man from? I really hope all the best for you. It is so exciting; so much always happening with you!!

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Faith Confu,

Ya, I'm a ditz. Anything with numbers turned my head into a spinning pinwheel of confusion---Math Confusion.

Yepperini, it's $2,933 a month. I changed it.

OK, and just to "keep it real" I sneezed all over the screen right now. Gross. Wiped it. Sorry.

I teach ENGLISH! TAAA-DAAAA! I've got a B.A. in Theatre and TEFL certification (I knew it would come in handy! Thanks real estate company for firing me so I could go get those credits!).

Where is the new husband frontrunner from?

I am a bit surprised on this one. He is from an African country. NOT North African. Just African. He came to the U.S. when he was 7 years old. I'm surprised because I thought I'd have to love a culture to consider a man. I don't love his culture...don't even really care that much about it currently...but I am interested in him. He's got a lot going for him!

Early days...we'll see. Reality never happens with a man until later.

ellen557 said...

The (L) is this thing I picked up from MSN Messenger (wish I hadn't haha). I think it symbolises a love heart?
Yup, am new here :) Well, new in the sense of actually commenting anyway.
I wanted to ask - did you get your TEFOL certification at university or some different institution? I've been trying that for a while - I'm studying Linguistics at uni and that seems to be the only degree I can get to slightly match TEFOL :(

Lisa said...

Asaalamu Alaykum Yosra,

I wonder if Allah is telling you through this post that you can find a wonderful man in Saudi Arabia. That you don't need the matrimonials, though the 3 front-runners sound very nice.

Maybe this will also allow you to get those pink jammies more quickly with a note from your new Saudi husband.

Oh Yosra, I'm so excited to see you so close to this dream. Mashallah. I say take this! You will love being there, so close to hajj. I love how you are living for these moments. You make me brave. Love you!

L_Oman said...

I dunno, Yosra. I have to be frank with you - while the money may seem good, considering the location....ummmm....I'd have to turn it down - and in a heartbeat!

Perhaps you could ask to speak with other employees - get the gist of things and all.

Have you tried to contact anyone at Sultan Qaboos Uni here in Oman? I just wonder how you will cope living there... I know an Omani lady that married a Saudi and it's really hard for her - she's got a wonderful hub, but the whole environment is wearing her down. I think you really need to think this through! Not to say that you won't be able to handle it and all, but your free spirit is really gonna be tied down more than you can imagine.

There are a gazillion (!) opportunites out there with your tefl / B.A. Is it really that hard to snag something?!?! I wish you the best...

Anonymous said...

Yosra, hmm how will you get around and get things done without a man in saudi?

Granted I haven't lived there recently but i'm just a concerned reader saying 'hey just know what yur getting into!'

is it going to be easy to have a support system there?

by the way, are you by any chance in virginia?


Solace In Islam said...

It is such an exciting time for you, just remember to make Istekhara before making a decision.

lufarah said...

Salams Yosra;

I would recommend you negotiate this salary -- you have to consider that you will have to hire a driver with a car, day-care for your child, and while 3000U$ goes a long-ish way in the US, everyday items are costly in the GCC.
Compared to the rest of Saudi, Jeddah is the least conservative city, but you will still need a man to do the most mundane things for you there.

Iman said...

I wanted to say the same things as Naureen. Saudi is brutal for a woman with no man. And the fact you are a Muslimah in hijab will make it even worse. A non-Muslim woman sans hijab in KSA probably has an easier time, but even then it's no picnic.

In fact you could get a much better position somewhere else with your qualifications. I have heard some people make crazy money here in Egypt teaching in universities. Would you be willing to check that out? Let me know if I can help.

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Readers,

I'm listening to you. I hear what you are saying about Saudi.

It's a sunny day here and I'm going to take Mr. Boo out into the real world and get some perspective.

I just called things off with the African interest. I just was only "ok" with somethings and that's not enough.

Saw the Tunisian last night. I asked him to marry me. Really. Thought that could be an answer to going overseas. He said "no".

Anonymous wrote to me, but she included her email. As a rule, I never post someone's email within the comments. Here's what she said:

I know someone who works in a school in an interna... I know someone who works in a school in an international school in egypt and gets paid very well.

so yeh if yur gona move overseas and deal with the lack of a support network, then i suggest egypt.

i wonder though, as a single woman, why are you looking to move overseas? the reason i say is that im having some marriage isues and i often think about moving back. i wonder if yu'd be a good person for me to speak with privately since i have a baby to care for as well.

anyway-egypt, WAY easier to get around. its totally different.

by the way im curious, yusra what state do you live in.

Asalamu Alaykom Anonymous,

Thank you for caring. I am interested in keeping afloat. That is where my interest lies. It isn't so much here or there---just SOMEWHERE! I need to be somewhere doing something to provide for my son. I cannot count on his father (especially when his immediate plans are to bring his 1st and current over here with two school-age children). I need to be secure somehow. I am applying all over the place and getting ZERO response in the U.S. However, for those oversease jobs, I am being considered highly with calls and interviews. Do you kind of see where I'm coming from?

I did apply all over Egypt. No response from them. We'll see.

As the post states: Life changes on a dime.

Take care :)

Faith Confusion said...

Ooooo interesting. I hope it all goes to your liking. I've seen some warnings about KSA here so I won't reiterate. It's not for everyone but maybe it is what you're looking for. Depends where you live though. I had a friend from Finland who lived in an international community there while she worked at a Finnish embassy and she had a ball.. she wasn't Muslim though.

Just wondering, do you have a walli?