got your attention right?
19.09.2013 - 29.09.2013 35 °C
This will probably be my last entry for Oman...because honestly how much can one write about a place they are no longer visiting..? I left Oman about a week ago, but still have a few things left to post about my trip. After my first walkabout, sad to say, I never got back to the grocery because the one day I tried to get back turned out to be a Saturday and it was quite literally like a Sunday in the traditional Western world where everywhere is closed. I ventured out and braved the heat because I needed to get some menthol rub and perhaps some salt to gargle or rinse my throat with because my sinuses were acting up, but after walking the short distance to the grocery store, which suddenly seemed twice as long in the near midday heat, I scurried back to the air-conditioned comfort of the hotel and asked them to call me a cab and direct me to the nearest drugstore that was open. The cab driver seemed to want to take me to someplace further but the hotel clerk was firm with him and so he agreed to take me to the nearest one. When we got there however, he still tried to convince me that I would prefer the one that was further away but I firmly told him that this one would be fine and then asked if I would be able to get a taxi to get back to the hotel and he then suggested he would wait, for no additional fee. I got my menthol rub....Vicks as it turned out...didn't even think to ask for it by name....but they knew the name! Also got some lozenges for my sore throat and then got back into the cab to head back to the hotel. And that was really all the "walking about" time I had for the whole trip. Every other time I was either in the meetings or at dinner. I seriously think they needed to schedule one day of inactivity to make up for all their slowness in getting things done, which usually meant we always stayed later than usual in the meetings.
But now to the subject of my latest entry, the rumours...I believe I read about this in the travel wiki, and this is about not smiling at the men, because they might mistake it for flirting. I found nothing of the sort to be the case, either in the hotel where I stayed or the hotel where our meeting was, or even at the Grand Mosque. Where on earth did the person who posted that information get the idea? If anything all the men were always smiling (and some of the ladies too) ...and it's not because of me...it's just how they are, most of them, very friendly types who have no problem smiling to greet any person they meet. Maybe it's more pronounced in the hotel as part of their training in customer service, I don't know, but I never got the feeling that if I smiled at a man, he would mistake my intentions...so whoever you are, stop spreading rumours! Also I get the idea they are somewhat relaxed about clothing here. I did not see any reason to be concerned about what I wore although I tried to be on the conservative side, I am almost certain, the rumours about people here being uptight about tight or revealing clothing is not very strongly rooted in fact. Maybe I am wrong, but that's just the feeling I get from observing the clothes worn by some and the demeanor of the people or the lack of any particular response to it. Generally I would say that Omanis tend to live and let live. I could be mistaken, but that's how I see it. Except, don't go to their Mosque without a head/upper body covering. Small price to pay to see the beautiful architecture of the place, really.