Experiential travel stories from India and 31 other countries!

Mr. and Mrs. in Riyadh!

Since I have played the below video, the one from British Airways, I have felt connected.  Somewhere, it captures our stories perfectly.   As couples, we all need our personal togetherness time. The rut of life, our customs and demands of life leave us with little time to celebrate with each other.  After celebrating all the festivals, our first anniversary at different places, in different time zones, my husband’s frequent absence by my side was coming tough on me. In my first year of marriage, we had been together only for three months rest all nine were spent in his travels.

By second year, the Isolation, depression and loneliness had come affecting us both. Our togetherness was far and something had to be done to get closer.  Hubby was trying his way and I was doing mine but things were not falling in place. It was time to decide, travel far to get closer in real.


And it was about one big step…I was ready to do everything to be with him.

Are you sure you wanna go? Mum checked in again.  I knew she wanted to hear a ‘No’ which I was not going to give her.

Yes, I said!

I really hope you don’t regret it later dear. You did your best to be where you are and what bothers me is that you ending it all now.

You are going as a dependent …. and even if you want you cannot find a job there…. reiterated my Dad..with a prolonged emphasis that I could not work there and I would have to live like a housewife….

It was not just my parents but even hubby’s parents were bothered..

My mum in law had started saying it so often… We will miss you Beta… I hope you like it there.. All day you will get bored…

Meenal, my elder sister shouted in disbelief…. You got to wear that black cloak all the time in public… haven’t you read it? Lady you can’t flaunt the colors… Beware!!!Take it seriously if you thinking you can get away with the rules..

I mumbled…. Yes!!!   I know…the expats are not forced to cover the face but yeah they do expect the scarfs on the hair and ofcourse Abaya is a must…and that too a black one.

She was shocked to hear my confidence when I filled her with accurate details…. she poured in more internet gyaan…  This is not a great idea… seriously… there are no theaters, not much for traveling around except the desert, no entertainment zones… just some shopping malls.  You can’t drive there tooo… Just stay here, he  will be back soon!!!!     Its just a matter of eleven months…

No… I said it hard..

Whenever anyone advised me to be patient….It would irk me badly because I had waited enough… I wanted to be with my husband and none could stop me… even if it meant putting many things at stake..

Mr. is a business consultant and he lives a life out of suitcase.  Before marriage the distance dint bother us because we had started dating long distance.  But honestly, in the last two years of marriage I have cribbed mostly because of time difference, the absence of proximity and lack of quality time. The number of days he spends as globetrotting is almost thrice of what he spends at home and when he is back he has other things to attend too as well.  Our time gets shared with others.

I have cribbed, cried and done everything that I could do. But when its work a man rarely has choices and since I work in the corporate too I know how it is. I have always tried my best to understand Mr. but then I am not among the rare species who can be happy in the absence of spouses.  My love marriage to him has been there because I have always loved being around him.

We have missed being together for most of the festivals, my birthday, his birthday and more so we missed our first anniversary as well. That was the day when my patience really gave up.  I mean it was so difficult to explain my state to anyone… I was pissed off.

When it was close to two years and hubby was still running around the globe changing hotels and flights, there came a silver lining in our cloudy relationship. He was asked to move to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to head a project. And guess what, this was going to be stable job for eleven months. He was not sure he wanted to go there because Riyadh is not a very happening place but very soon he had no choice. Now a tough decision before us. How often would he be back… once in two months or three… and how would we manage without each other. I had come to detest long distance living and had given up patience long time.

He urged me to be strong though I knew he wasn’t happy about it at all. But he never mentioned it to me. He din’t want me to leave my job for him. Did I want to do it ? Well a established career is a house build on hard work and patience which cannot be wrecked easily. When Mr. left for his new assignment, in a weeks time, I had decided time had come to take a step further…

He sounded low on calls because Riyadh was lonely and frustrating both.  Suddenly his on the Go lifestyle had hit a low. Being a vegetarian it was coming a little tough on him to find much for him in Saudi. And he knew I was bothered by his absence. Since our marriage most of our time had been spent living away from each other.

The second anniversary was a month away. I wanted to surprise him by being by his side in Riyadh but if you thought it was easy, it was impossible. I needed a visa which only hubby could provide for and that too his workplace had to arrange it for him. When I told him, I had applied for a week’s leave and I was coming to be with him and spend our second marriage anniversary, he was thrilled.  And soon I was at King Khalid International Airport. Mr. was there to pick me up and I couldn’t wait to hug me across the glasses. But it was Riyadh, no public display of affection is allowed there… I had read it and the words floated before my eyes. And Yes! I wore a Abaya (Burka) just at the airport. Hubby gave a pleasant smile finding me in a different attire.

Ten days that I spent with hubby were the most special ones. I lived a life that I had missed for long. The hotel apartment was the perfect one room set that we needed for two of us. We lovebirds got the time to talk to each other. After two years we celebrated our wedding day together. We thrived in our independence. Though when we stepped out, I could not flaunt my best clothes, colors and had to wear a burqa it hardly mattered. When the world was talking about women rights in Riyadh, I was happy to be with my husband in the same place and felt unaffected with the restrictions. We could not hold hands while walking on the roads or in taxi but his mere presence by my side was amazingly comforting. There was so much that we got to know about each other that we had missed in two years.  I loved to cook for him and he helped me with them. We had got this time to be with each other. I thanked God… but time flew in a fluke…I dint want to return but had to.

Long distance has been a tough call. I miss the togetherness and our own space. And thus I am all game for taking the big decision. I want to quit my job and join Mr. in Riyadh. The advices have been pouring in. Everybody has their own things to say but then what matters is what my heary want.  Does wearing a Abaya stand between us? Should not being able to work stop me? Should my career be a priority over my own happiness? Just because I will get bored and will have to live as a housewife, should I compromise with my love for him.

Well the answer for all of it deserves a big NO!

I am ready to go any far to be closer to him. Yes! I am flying off soon to be with him… I am done with my job and  soon I am all set to don the hat of a freelancer.  Staying at home doesn’t mean that my studies will go wasted, and more I want to be with one person who has always instilled confidence in me and has been by my side…I can and I am doing it…Sometimes one has to go beyond the farthest to be together. And then there are always many beautiful places like London, Paris, New York, Spain, Norway, Zurich, Venice, Singapore, Malaysia to get closer but before that we need to live together. I would love to start my venture with Dubai first!!! Yippee!!

Mr. and Mrs. in Riyadh on the day of our 2nd anniversary.


This is my post for Indiblogger contest  and British Airways “Go further to get closer” theme.

Contest Topic

How far would you go to get closer to someone you love?

2 thoughts on “Mr. and Mrs. in Riyadh!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.