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Life in Kuwait

October 13, 2016
kuwait, expats, living abroad

Today marks 7 weeks as expats so I just wanted to give a quick update on how life in Kuwait is going.

Kyle is in the full swing of professing his knowledge at the American University and loving it and I started working last week!

Before we went to Doha we signed a lease and put down deposits on a great apartment right around the corner. We were really excited because it has a perfect balcony and is so close to the university that we would only need one car.

But, when we got back to Kuwait and I turned my phone back on I had 3 missed calls and lots of texts from the realtor. Apparently, one of the other tenants in the building heard that we have a dog and they complained to the owner. The owner decided he didn’t want to go through with our contract, which left us back to square one with apartment hunting. Mind you, we were assured from the very beginning that dogs were 100% allowed at the property.

The (tarnished) silver lining is that if we had moved in, brought Roxy over, and THEN the other tenant complained, it appears that – per Kuwaiti law – the owner could have decided to terminate our contract and kick us out. After buying appliances, furniture, and bringing Roxy over. That would have been a complete nightmare. So, good riddance to the flip floppy building owner.

The other piece of silver lining is that the apartment was unfurnished. In Kuwait, unfurnished means no furniture, no closets, and no appliances. So to move in we were going to have to purchase a refrigerator/freezer, washing machine/dryer, and stove/oven. That’s in addition to 100% of the furniture.

After starting our search all over, we had a bit of a hard time letting go of our perfect balcony dream. But, it had to die. We have signed a lease for a furnished apartment, so that reduces our move-in costs by quite a lot. It’s not as perfect as the one around the corner but it allows dogs and is still close enough for Kyle to walk to work and those are the most important things.

expat, kuwait, auk

American University of Kuwait

We move in this week!. Hopefully the stars will align and I’ll be able to fly back to the States to get Roxy in early November. Temperatures here are still pretty high but have come down just slightly. Still in the 100sF most days though. Now that we have the apartment, the temperatures are the biggest factor for the November timing to get Roxy.

The next big thing on our list is getting a CAR. Taxis aren’t necessarily hard to find but it is such a pain to be without a car. Kyle has his Civil ID and his driver’s license now (yay!). We just have to decide on whether to lease or buy a car. Also, it seems that he was exempt from a driving test because he has a PhD. Meaning, there’s a good chance I won’t be exempt and will have to take one. Sounds.Like.Fun.

After we get a car we will FINALLY be able to join an actual gym. They are just to far away to take taxi’s to every day. Even though I think I am actually dying without one. Our little gym here at our current apartment helps but I cannot wait to get back in a real gym. And the fact that we’ll have a nice outdoor pool is also really exciting.

Also, now that he has his civil ID we’re waiting for my paperwork to be completed for my visa and ID. Our trip to Bahrain to complete all of this madness is scheduled for October 15th. We’ll have 2.5 days to move into our new apartment before heading to the airport. We’ll hopefully only be there for 2 days.

For whatever reason, spouses have to go to Bahrain to complete their visa application and medical tests. Even though they were all done prior to leaving the States. Kyle had to have his done again too, but his were completed in Kuwait. Very strange system – I’m sure there might be logic in there somewhere, but I’ll take a free 2 day trip anytime. Even if I will be subjected to needle sticks and x-rays.

When we return, I’ll have a one-entry visa. After that, it seems I’ll have the exact same test for the third time before my permanent resident visa application is complete. So, on Wednesday morning I have an appointment with an AUK Human Resources person and another spouse to complete all of this nonsense. Then, I’ll receive my passport back, complete with visa. Next, will be my Civil ID, and then I’ll be able to get a drivers license. Still a long road ahead it seems.

Really looking forward to having all of the legalities done with and being able to finally settle in here.

I’m enjoying my new job. I’m working 5 hours 4 days per week. I think I’ll have a ton of room for growth with my position so I’m really excited about it. I’m really going to have to work on taking pictures around Kuwait, I’ve apparently been doing terrible with that because I have none! Promise to add more next time.

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