After the exciting arrival that I had (check the previous ep here) I decided to explore the new city. One funny thing happened is that I rushed and bought the beddings from the housing office and later on I found out that it was 20 GP cheaper outside. Don’t always trust the housing offices. Speaking of which, here’s a picture of where I lived.
Anyway, the first thing you normally do in a new city is trying to find the most important places such as restaurants, pharmacies, grocery stores, mosques, etc. I was not very lucky at first because when I got out I took the wrong direction which led me to a “nothing-there” area. I walked for 20 minutes and I didn’t see a single store. You can imagine all sort of things came to my head, “omg, is this how I’m going to live for the coming 5 months”, “oh no, is this Manchester? Or I’m in the wrong city?”, “are you kidding me?”. During these scary comments, hooray I found a grocery store. It was actually just 3 minutes away if I took the opposite direction. So I went there to buy some basics e.g. water, tissues, but unfortunately it was closed. Now for a guy coming from the Middle East where stores close at 11 pm or even 12, I found that strange because it was just 8 pm. Did I mention that it was freezing cold? And did I mention that I love cold weather? I guess not.
I came back after an epic fail of not eating or buying anything. I threw myself on the bed and thinking is this really it? Or I just didn’t manage to search in the right direction?
On a side note, there were 3 other students from KAUST who are staying with me in the same house. When I say the same house I mean the same building because our house was a dorm system where each student has his own room. Each room has a bed, desk, closet, sink, and a chair.
Luckily, after talking to these students, I found another way to go and find stores. It was completely the opposite. When you go out of the house, just take left and keep walking for about 7 minutes and there’s a street called “curry mile”. This street has three main advantages; great food, stores open till late, and most of the food is Halal.
I walked the whole street, and then I decided to eat. Believe it or not, the Kebab I had there was THE best Kebab I’ve ever had. The restaurant is called “Abdul’s”. I will not bother you with what I bought that day, but I bought a lot.
After getting familiar with the areas around me and where I can get my stuff, it’s time to get ready for the real thing. First day of university.
–to be continued