Observations from an Expat woman's first month in Oman
1. The hummus in Oman is THE smoothest hummus you will ever have! Don't get me started on the beetroot flavoured hummus I had for breakfast the other day at Bateel, it was life-changing!
2. You learn to park wherever and whenever you want. At first glance, it seems ludicrous to park with the bumper of your car blocking a doorway to a lift in a multi-story carpark, but people do it and now I do too!
3. People are so friendly!!! I cannot walk down the street for longer than 10 minutes without someone pulling over to offer me a lift. I will add that clearly it's very rare to walk anywhere as everyone looks so shocked that I don't want to drive everywhere.
4. Who knew Whatsapp was so popular. Restaurants, shops even schools are encouraging you to join their group chats, forget Facebook & Instagrams' adverts you're basically opting into the ads to come more directly to you. I have now learned that when I purchase something whether it's passport ID photos from a camera shop, to a cushion in Matalan I don't actually need to give my phone number over and shouldn't!
5. Supermarket shopping is VERY different. Plastic bags are all the rage if you don't bag up your herbs and vegetables people get very foncused. You also have to take them to get weighed separate to the till. I recommend still bringing your own carrier bags, purely to see the faces on fellow shoppers as they get so confused and to also have the excuse of why you want to pack your bags, to save your peaches getting bruised as they're tossed down the conveyor belt to the shopping assistant.
6. Laban is not milk, I repeat it's not milk and shouldn't be served with Weetabix.
7. Tissues are life here. Boxes are on restaurant tables, in everyone's cars, they're also sold at petrol pumps!
8. Petrol is put in your car for you, forget oily fingers and going over the amount you want, as workers very kindly do it for you.
9. The views in Oman are fantastic! Jump in the car and just go on a drive, whether it's on The Amerat Mountain Road or at Yiti Beach, you're sure to see something you like.
10. Fried cheese with syrup is a thing. It may sound strange but WOW it's delicious, it's called Kanafa and is served with pistachio. I am yet to eat a whole one in one sitting but have already had three and am keen to eat more!