July 11, 2007

36 degrees and rising...

Nope! I wasn't talking about Rafi's having any fever. It's about the current temperature in Jeddah. It's summer time! During the day, it could reach 39 degrees and sometimes 40, while in the evening it's around 36-37. Note, this is not midsummer yet. Uh-oh!

We did some househunting during daylight last week with Mukti's friend. Quite tiring. When we got off the car or out of the cool office door, the heat virtually slapped us in the face. I have to put a blanket over Rafi's head and an umbrella over us. It was even worse for Mukti's friend, since he is white. He got exhausted quickly and turn red in an instant.


Now that summer has come, another thing entails. It's the dust (sand) storm. The first one has come about 2 weeks ago. I thought it would be raining because the sky was so dark since morning fell. But, it was sandstorm. My floor and bed were covered with dust. This was actually not too bad compared to what we had last year. We couldn't even get out of the house since it had almost zero visibility and also bad for your respiratory system. Dark and dusty. I had to swept and mopped the floor almost every half hour. Click here for a picture of dust storm in Jeddah.


Well, during summer, lots of things are also rising. The electricity bill for instance. Due to the extreme heat, AC is a must. So, the AC is almost on 24/7. And ours are the window type AC which are quite inefficient. But, there are already some holes provided by the landlord to put the AC. So, window type it is. The cost can double during this 3-4 months. Last year we have to pay around SAR 250-350 monthly(around EUR 53-74 or IDR 600k-840k) while in the winter sometimes it didn't even hit SAR 90.

Another thing that rising is the percentage of the price discount. For 2 months, most of the stores have the summer sale. In the beginning, the discount probably only 30%, but then increased to 50%. In the end of the summer sale, you could see 75-80% discount on lots of stores including the branded ones. So, this is the best time to shop and best thing about Saudi summer.

The worst thing about being in extreme sunlight and heat for women is that we have to wear BLACK abayas. Elementary school children even know that BLACK absorbs heat and light. It is one of un-ISLAMIC things I found around here in Arab. Well, that can be another discussion on how ISLAM IS NOT ARAB CULTURE. It's okay if we have to wear the long loose abaya, but why must it be black? Why can't the women choose other colors that suited them and more comfy to be worn in the heat?

Anyway, when you're in Rome do as Romans do, right?

Last but not least, summer heat saves us gas for water heater. The water tank on the top of the building was "boiled" by the heat, so even at night we can enjoy a nice warm shower without having to turn on the hot water tap. Cool!

Enjoy your summer!



3 comments:

  1. Ya ampun, waktu dulu temen gue tunjukin foto sandstorm gue kebayang bagaimana ya orang yg tinggal di sana? nah elo sekarang ngalamin hehehe... Fotonya serem banget tapi nggak kaya tornado atau twister ya? nggak lah ya kalo nggak lo nggak bakal nulis blog ini hehehe

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  2. Mudah2an diberi kemudahan oleh Allah SWT dalam menghadapi summer disana ya, AMIN!
    Mbak lanjutin cerita unislamic di Arab ya, penasaran....

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  3. Eva, kayaknya kalo di outskirtnya Jeddah emang begitu gambarnya. Kl pas udah di dalem kota, jadi yang 2 gambar terakhir. Tp gue inget tahun lalu anginnya kenceng bgt bawa kerikil, kedengeran di jendela gitu, n pohon berisik serasa di Belanda :p

    Silvi, dari dulu pengen sih cerita soal ini, cuma kapasitasnya krg mencukupin hehehe. Nanti aku coba deh. Thanks for the suggestion.

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