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Simon B
 
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Life in Bahrain

26 November 2010, 15:00  - Simon B
We live on the island of Bahrain in the Persian Gulf. I have been in Middle East for approximately 10 years and would like to share with the readers the lifestyle and cultural experiences here.

Let’s list the good things first:

1. It is safe, we don’t lock the house doors at night and we can walk anywhere.

2. Salaries are compatible with US and EU salaries.

3. No personal tax.

4. Fuel is R2 per litre.

5. Cars are 50% of what it costs in SA.

6. Insurance is very low.

7. Contrary to the media bias, the local people are extremely nice.

8. We have bars, live entertainment and of course the F1.

9. Medicine in pharmacies is cheap and you don’t need a prescription.

10. You can go straight to the specialist and not have to go through a GP.

11. We can hop over to Dubai for a fun weekend and some shopping.

12. I can follow rugby on OSN satellite TV.

13. Strict Visa rules keeps out unwanted elements.

Secondly let’s list the “not so good” things:

1. Private schools are expensive, but it is good. Kids learn English (1), Arabic (2) and French (3) before they reach 8.

2. Citizenship is difficult to obtain.

3. Strict Visa rules also make it difficult to bring family/friends over for a visit. It’s not impossible, just difficult.

4. Being desert, summer is damn hot with 100% humidity.

Next move, not sure, but SA is not really on the list. With the current state of affairs we don’t see SA as an option. We call Bahrain our home.

- Are you a South African living abroad interested in sharing your views? What is it like for a South African living in a foreign country or how do you view South Africa from a distance? Send us your columns to feedback@news24.com and you might get published in our new Beyond Borders section.

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