Trips to Jeddah

This weekend we took another trip to Jeddah.  We're looking for a kitten, but aren't too keen about picking up a stray from around campus.  Getting around Jeddah is an interesting experience all by itself.  There are weekly trips scheduled to a few of the malls in Jeddah and to the International hospital.  The more we go to Jeddah, the more malls we find.  We've been to four different malls, and honestly they're all the same for the most part.  The Mall of Arabia did have a really cool indoor amusement park which included a water slide!  Anyway, after a lot of searching online and talking to the vet clinic here on campus, we were able to get a decent idea of where a pet store was in Jeddah.  Finding this out was no small feat, because unlike in the US where you can just Google a business and find their address and phone number and such, you can't really do that for businesses here.  We did manage to find a blog that mentioned a specific store that actually did have a website; it turned out to be pretty close to one of the vet clinics in Jeddah so the vet here on campus drew us a general map of the area.

After getting to the Mall of Arabia, we then had to catch a taxi to the pet store.  Again, no small feat.  The key seems to be to find a driver who speaks enough English to actually understand where we want to go.  Thankfully it only took a couple of tries to find a taxi driver who knew where to take us.  The trip to the store was terrible on my nerves.  I feel like everyone here drives like they're the most important people on the road and everyone should get out of the way.  Lane lines, turn signals, seat belts, and even medians all seem to be suggestions when driving in Jeddah!  After only one minor slow down from traffic (the police were checking if taxi drivers were wearing seat belts, apparently it's a 100SAR ($27) fine if they don't) we managed to make it to the pet store.  We had a really interesting "conversation" with the taxi driver which started with him asking whether we liked Bush or Obama.  Talk about an awkward question.  I can't really say this is really the place where I would wear my political affiliations on my sleeve, so it was interesting to see that the taxi driver supported Obama and thought Bush was bad.  He also liked Martin Luther King and Jimmy Carter, but I honestly don't know much about Carter at all.

We darted to an electronics store to get a printer cable, since the printer we bought didn't come with the necessary one.  We're still looking for a slow cooker, I swear one day we'll find one mixed in with the rice cookers and what a day that will be!

We got to the pet store right as they were closing down for one of the prayers so we had to hang around outside the store for about 20 minutes until they opened back up.  It's always so much nicer to get stuck inside the store, rather than outside; with big stores like the hyper markets they just close you in the store until they open again.

Sadly, they did have super cute kittens, but they were way over priced.  There's no way we would reasonably spend 1,000 SAR (~$280) just for a kitty!

So we ended up back at the Mall of Arabia and settled for dinner at TGI Friday's where I got the best mudslide (nonalcoholic of course) and then did a bit of shopping.  I really needed a new sweatshirt.

Now we're going to wait and see if we can find/capture a stray kitty from around campus.