The Sex & the City 2 Spin

July 14, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Posted in Eye on the Gulf, Girltalk | 1 Comment
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I’m probably one of the biggest Sex & the City fans there is.¬† I love the glamour, the fashion, the personalities and of course New York ūüôā¬† I loved the first movie and I love the Sequel even more.¬† But for glamour’s sake, I think I need to lessen the STC2 spin on Abu Dhabi and Arabs in general so any of you who haven’t been there know what it’s really like. I’ve lived in the Middle East for over 10 years (Beirut, Kuwait, Dubai) and…

  • I’ve never seen sand nor a camel unless I sign up for an excursion just as they did.
  • Only 20 – 30% of ladies and men wear the traditional wear which hardly ever consists of the Burqa covering the whole face.¬† Last I checked, that was only in certain areas of KSA.
  • Most of the women and men in all these countries dress just the same as Western ladies do if not sexier.
  • Let me take the above statement one step further and¬†state that most us “Middle Easterners” are actually Westerners with dual nationalities that were born or lived most of our lives outside of the Middle East.
  • If you had sex on the beach in America, you’d also be put away for a considerable amount of time.
  • That wasn’t Abu Dhabi… It was Morocco… Abu Dhabi is modern, green and stunningly new.

As one last statement on the matter, I invite everyone living outside of the Middle East to come and witness our beauty of nature, our architecture, our history, our vibrant lives, our charm and our glamour.  You might never return back home. 

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The Thirty-Something Crisis

April 27, 2009 at 9:21 pm | Posted in Girltalk | 6 Comments
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Love and gossip¬†may be the topics that twenty-somethings talk¬†most about,¬†but weight and getting healthy¬†are almost sure to top the list among thirty-something chit chat.¬† More specifically, coming to terms with the fact that weight just doesn’t drop off as quickly and as effortlessly as it did during the twenties.¬† My friends and I constantly talk about our mission to get back into the shape we were in 10 years ago.¬† Even the other day at the beach, I overheard a bunch of guys in their thirties sharing their disappointment on how hard they are having to work to get ripped and to lose their evergrowing gut. It’s a sad reality.¬† I can guarantee that the majority of my fellow gymmates are in their thirties giving it all they have to maintain what twenty-somethings take for granted.¬†

I’ve been going to the gym every other day and combining a mix of weights followed by cardio… high / low intensity cardio (running/walking/stepping) and i’m think i’ve got the hang of it for the next 10 years ūüėȬ† But hell… if 30 is like this, what the hell is 40 and 50 gonna be like???

Middle Eastern vs. Western World

November 2, 2008 at 3:00 pm | Posted in Around the World, Girltalk | 5 Comments
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I recently read a post called Style Battle: Middle East v. Western World ¬†about a picture that doesn’t portray the image of¬†repressed women in the Middle East that most people around the world¬†are used to.¬† I was so happy when I read that post and it inspired me to write one of my own because¬†I really want to get the message out to as many people as possible.¬†

Yes there is an issue of repression¬†of women¬†in¬†some areas of Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia and maybe a bit in Iran¬†which has happened in recent years due to fanatacism¬†which is in no way representative of Islam or the Middle East.¬†¬†On the contrary, women in the¬†Middle East are considered¬†precious and¬†truly valued. Especially the Mother.¬†¬†Women (most atleast) in the Middle East live the life that most people can only dream of.¬† Just because a woman wears a veil doesn’t¬†in any way¬†mean that she is repressed.¬† It¬†may be a religious duty or an obligation but it doesn’t¬†necessarilty deem that woman as repressed and she is usually the one who chooses to be covered.¬†¬†Actually if you visit the Middle East, you will see some of the most beautiful fabrics in the world worth thousands of dollars which make the Hijab’s that these ladies wear.

From a general view, Life in the rest of the Middle East is fabulous¬†for men and women if you have the means to enjoy it.¬† I moved to the Middle East with my family when I was 17 and I never moved back to the States eventhough my parents urged me to go back.¬† But if you ask anyone who has¬†lived in¬†both the ME and the WEST…¬† you will get¬†a very similar response.¬† Here’s what I love about the Middle East as a single girl who travels back and forth between Lebanon and Kuwait.

  • I am extremely safe.¬† If I ever face any problems, I can just scream and every male in a radius of a mile will be at my assistance protecting a woman’s honor.
  • I am just a short flight away from some of the best destinations in the world.¬† Europe, Far East, Greece, Turkey, Dubai, Lebanon.
  • I have a Great job and I make a ton of Tax free money.
  • I don’t have to pay for anything that requires entertainment.¬† In most cases, the men pay for everything.¬† So whether it’s a date or just hanging out as friends, girls are usually spoiled ūüôā
  • I don’t have to do any house work.¬† We pay very good money for maids to do that.¬† And no they are not repressed either!¬† They make really good money and have better accomodation and treatment than they do in their home countries.¬†
  • I almost always have my nails and hair done by a salon because the prices are so cheap… Beauty and fashion is VERY IMPORTANT in the Middle East which is half of the reason that almost any women over here could compete on a celebrity level with perfect bodies and faces.
  • After I get married, whether I work or not is my choice because it’s usually the man’s responsibility to take care of the finances, whereas it’s the woman’s responsibility to take care of the house and kids.¬† Of course, many women work to entertain themselves and even to assist with support of the family these days so this is not etched in stone.
  • Luxury cars are very accessible.¬† Me and almost everyone I know has a gorgeous car from a BMW to a MERC to Porsche.
  • Luxurywear is also very accessible… Clothes, bags, glasses, shoes.
  • You can enjoy¬†the best nightlife¬†in the world (especially in Lebanon or Dubai)
  • I dress however I feel like dressing.¬† Noone obliges me to wear anything.¬† Most ladies in the middle east are among the most stylish women in the world.¬† And if this is about skin, then visit Dubai or Lebanon or Egypt or Jordan for an expose of the most beautiful¬†hardly dressed¬†bodies in the world.

I know I sound like a spoiled brat right now but¬†why shouldn’t I live it up if it’s right there¬†for the taking?¬† It doesn’t mean I am not an independent woman because I work for every dollar that I make.¬† I am sure I am missing a ton of benefits but since I’m at work, I am not giving it my full effort.¬† But I’m sure any Middle Eastern ladies or any Western ladies living in the Middle East reading this can¬†point out alot more¬†benefits.

Lesson: Don’t always believe what you hear or see on TV especially through the news.¬† Propaganda is created for political purposes but is not real 80% of the time.¬†

“Hello World, Hope you Missed Me”

October 30, 2008 at 9:16 am | Posted in Girltalk | Leave a comment
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I’m not sure why that song just popped in my mind but it seems the best title for this post and I miss the world so so so much.¬† Or atleast I miss the world through my laptop or maybe I just miss my routine!¬† OH GOD I MISS MY ROUTINE!¬† I am officially confirming that I am a creature of habit that does not react well to change and that falls into comfortable ruts that I really don’t want to get myself out of.¬† ūüôā¬† Smoking was hard enough but now changing my whole morning routine!!! That’s pushing it a little too far.¬†

FYI… My company recently blocked almost every form of social connection to the world such as facebook and messenger and the blogosphere and chat of any form.¬†¬† I had a handy proxy which for some reason stopped working for the last few days.¬† Somehow today IT WORKED AND I’M CELEBRATING.

It’s funny how only¬†less than a decade back, we hardly had email or cells for that matter and surely didn’t have more than 10 friends to keep in touch with.¬† All the sudden we have 200 to 300¬†friends to¬†keep up to date with on a weekly basis and being cut off from your chats and source of social news can be sadly confining.¬† Being in the here and now is no longer the preferred choice of friendship.¬† My best friend and I have not seen each other in well over 5 years but we chat every single day for hours and constantly check up on each other’s pics.¬† It’s as if we never parted a day in our lives.¬†

If you think about it for a bit, it’s quite depressing actually.¬† There are many days where I can literally keep myself busy for hours and hours and not feel one percent of loneliness or boredom. But when you stop to think about it… It’s just me and my computer and a virtual reality that I can turn on and off whenever I please.

Not that I’m complaining ūüôā¬† It’s just food for thought.

Getting Ready for the Big 30!!

July 28, 2008 at 4:54 pm | Posted in Girltalk | 2 Comments
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A little over one week to go and there will be no turning back.¬† I will officially be 30 years old although if you ever meet me in real life, I will never admit to being a day over 28 ūüėȬ† I must admit, I have been in a bit of a panic although I was quite cool about the idea in the beginning of the year and even wrote a whole post about my excitement of “Turning Thirty“.¬† I mean I don’t mind it happening but I’m not too¬†thrilled about being only 10 years away from 40.¬†¬†

Anyway, here are my last words of advice as a 29 year old to all you twenty somethings reading this. 

1.  If you are going to change something in your lifestyle (losing weight, smoking, bad habits), do it before you turn 30.  Actually do it before you are are 28 because it gets harder to change things as you get older.  

2.¬† Have FUN!!!¬† Most of us don’t realize that the early twenties are truly the only time in your life that you literally don’t have 10% of the responsibilities you will have for the rest of your life.

3.¬†¬†Everything will pass!!!¬† Stop having panic attacks over bad hair days, breakups that you are sure would have never worked¬†or a zit.¬† Cuz you will look back on them and wish you didn’t waste so much time caring.¬†

4.¬† Enjoy the beauty of being “Natural”.¬† Don’t bother yourself with creams and makeup in your twenties because you don’t need to.¬† You will look beautiful with or without.¬† You have the rest of your life to use those and they will be a necessity.

5.   Use a ton of moisturizer.  You will be happy you did later on.

6.   Keep in mind that everything you do to your body in your twenties will show eventually.   Trust me on this one. LOL.  All those damn doritos I thought I could lose in a week will NOT GO!

Ok i know i sound really old talking like this.  But maybe this is because 30 is literally just around the corner.  So just accept it.   Plus I really wish I applied all this when I was starting out in my twenties. 

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10 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

July 15, 2008 at 4:27 pm | Posted in Girltalk | Leave a comment
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This is quite an interesting article I just read on Arabian Business called “10 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week“.¬† Below I’ve posted¬†8 of the¬†10 things for anyone interested in gaining a bit more General Knowledge.¬† If you enjoyed these, Fonzation has a couple of posts entitled “Did You Know” for further reading.¬†¬†

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1. The Chrysler Building in New York is 1,047ft tall and remains the tallest brick built structure in the world.

2. Great White Sharks have, on average, 3,000 teeth in their heads.

3. The world’s deadliest animal is not a crocodile or a lion but a tiny little mosquito – responsible for two million deaths every year.

4. The coldest temperature ever recorded was in Vostock II, Antarctic on July 21, 1983. It was measured at a chilly -89.2C.

5. A scarf is an efficient weapon for serial murder after one is believed to have been used to kill eight women in Tehran.

6. Cow farts can save the world by helping to control climate change.

7. The green part of the Emirates flag represents fertility. The white is for neutrality while the black is for oil wealth and the red recalls the flags of the Kharijite Muslims.

8. While Dubai’s population grew by nearly eight percent last year, the UAE’s capital, Abu Dhabi, has seen a drop of 11 percent since 2004.

The Vacation After the Vacation

July 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm | Posted in Girltalk | 3 Comments

I’m back from Beirut.¬† We had a great time but we’re also very happy to be back.¬† Vacations are great to get away from everything but it’s also a great feeling to get back on track – or back into the routine.¬† Let me rephrase… It’s great to take your time getting back into the routine rather than being thrown in it.¬† This trip we came back a day earlier in order to have one day of relaxation instead of coming in 7 hours before reporting to work.¬†¬† So today I took my time, slept in, ¬†unpacked my bags, checked my mails and expenses,¬† sorted out my house and groceries and now I’m getting ready to go to the gym – which I actually miss after one week of absence.¬†¬†For me,¬†returning one day earlier¬†from vacation is¬†a must after vacation.¬†¬†

What Color are You?

June 24, 2008 at 9:34 am | Posted in Girltalk | 1 Comment
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Painting from Kazuya Akimoto Art Museum

Everybody has a favorite color or two that they favor.¬† Mine are blue and white (although white isn’t necessarily considered a color), but there is something so soothing about that combination and maybe if I combine it with a light grey I can create fresh¬†visual appeal¬†of Spring and Winter – my two favorite seasons.

Some people are into warmer colors whereas some are into cooler colors on the spectrum but these articles and quizzes should do a good job to place you where you belong.

Interior Personality Quiz: Find out which colors would suit your house and surroundings

Color:  Meaning, Symbolism & Psychology

What Does Your Favorite Color Say about You?

The Pros & Cons of the Afternoon Nap

June 24, 2008 at 9:13 am | Posted in Girltalk | 1 Comment
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Over the years I have gone through stages where I nap during the afternoon and stages where I don’t need it.¬† These days I’m pulling a 7am to 11pm shift with no sleep in between.¬† I personally prefer this to the afternoon nap for so many reasons:

1.  I get tired for the rest of the day (especially when I sleep too long)

2.  Sometimes the whole process of falling asleep, sleeping and waking up and reenergizing can take too long out of the time you have in the day.

3.¬† Once you get in the habit of sleeping in the afternoon, it’s very hard to break because your body automatically is ready for sleep the next afternoon.

4. You don’t sleep as well at night.

Of course there are alot of benefits to the afternoon nap too such as repair, refreshment, catching up on the sleep you didn’t get the night before and so on.¬†¬† It even improves memory function.

I did some research on what the ideal nap solution is for those who love to sleep especially after a long day of work.¬† An afternoon POWER nap consisting of 20 minutes a day is the perfect amount of time needed to rest without feeling tired when you wake up.¬† The Nap shouldn’t last longer than 30 minutes as that’s when deep sleep starts to set in.¬†

For those who want to counter drowsiness during the afternoon, you can try the following “preventing drowsiness” tips.

Do You Get Pretty Woman Syndrome?

June 19, 2008 at 9:04 am | Posted in Girltalk | 3 Comments
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There is a part in the movie Pretty Woman that I’m sure almost every person (guy & girl) can relate to.¬† The part where you are low on cash or don’t necessarily make enough money to buy items in the store or restaurant and you get looked down upon by the salesperson or you feel that you need to buy not to look like a chump in front of them.¬†

You can also see a similar scenario in Friends with the episode of “Monica’s Boots” where she buys the boots that are more than her rent because the salesperson looked at her in a way of “you can’t afford those.”

Yesterday, me and my sister and Hanx were presented with a situation like this at Courtyard Marriot.¬† We were really hungry but of course low on money since it’s the end of the month and we’ve already travelled twice.¬† So we asked about the price for the buffet which turned out to be 10KD.¬† Under normal circumstances, this isn’t a bad price but in dire situations, a bit of realism is required.¬† So Hanx & I thanked the waiter but went to the restaurant next door (Il Forno) which is just as good.¬† My sis ended up getting so embarrassed and¬†wanted us to sit for the buffet so we don’t look cheap.¬†

I was thinking about it… Usually the waiters or salespeople don’t make that much money and are regular employees as we are therefore should understand if we can’t pitch larger amounts of money.¬† So why do we find ourselves in situations where we try to prove ourselves in front of them to look good keeping in mind that we’ll probably never see those people again?¬† This could apply to a clothing shop, restaurant, hotel, or almost anywhere that has someone serving you.

So what would you do in that situation? 

Option A:  Look good and cash out the 10KD knowing that there is a restaurant 5 steps away for less

Option B:¬† Decline to the salesperson’s face and ignore the thought that you are being judged¬†by the salesperson (which is probably all in your head by the way)?

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