2 May

I haven’t posted much in a while… mostly because my dear driver has been a sweetheart lately. Started answering “you’re welcome” when I say thank you, showing up on time, not running red lights or going over curbs… not trying to kill me. stuff like that.

But I came across some interesting info the other day… did you know that if, as a Saudi man, you apply for a visa for a driver, you have to prove that your wife either has children or a job in order to be eligible for a driver?? So if you’re a young bride whose husband travels a lot or has long hours at work, and you don’t have a job and haven’t started popping babies yet, then the official point of view is that you can bum around at home all day till your darling hubby comes back exhausted so you can bug him to take you out to get groceries or see your friends or go shopping or something. You don’t deserve a driver you aren’t productive in the community. You can try Taxis maybe. If your husband allows it. or a local/Illegal driver….. or continue using your family’s driver… that happens a lot. Or just get a job!

Anyhow, yeah, I see a recipe for disaster. I guess they’re trying to limit the number of drivers in the country. Dont really blame them, but I have a better idea: Let the women drive! Then you can severely limit the rules for getting a driver’s visa without making someone’s life more difficult in the process.

I mean really… lately all I feel is betrayed. Betrayed by my own country because any man from any other country has more rights than I do when it comes to freedom of transportation… and honestly, it hurts. Like it hurts to be betrayed by someone you love. Because in the end this IS home, and all bad stuff aside, I really do love it here.


11 Responses to “Rules”

  1. Om Lujain May 31, 2010 at 10:13 am #

    I feel your frustration! Every time I really think about it, I want to just scream! I have a valid driving license, have driven in other countries for years… That my cousins that I nearly double n age can drive, and I st here waiting and begging for any man to take me about my day angers me beyond comprehension. The last 6 years have passed with everyone telling me that ‘women will begin driving soon, end of this year.. etc’…. I say we all ride donkeys in the streets to get our point across!

    I remember being pregnant with my first child, my husband was busy at work, and I needed to get some things for the baby. I remember asking the driver to get the car ready, as my mom, aunt and I were gonna go out to the mall. he point blank said ‘no, I can’t, I am sick’… which was a bunch of BS to me because I am 100% sure he would be behind the wheel in a second if he needed something done…. I went into labour the next day 😦

    GREAT BLOG!!!!!!!!

    • ksadriverdiaries May 31, 2010 at 3:08 pm #

      and thank you for sharing that story! if you have any more please feel free to post it!

  2. Muneeb May 6, 2010 at 9:27 pm #

    I think these rules are also having a negative economic impact on the Saudi economy. If they let such women have drivers then the drivers can send money, the women can shop and or spend money. I thought that was the priority in the after recession age.
    I see no logical reason for these rules

    • ksadriverdiaries May 9, 2010 at 9:34 am #

      “what recession”?? lol
      many will claim Saudi was untouched by it

      • islamicarticles May 9, 2010 at 6:12 pm #

        I think what Muneeb means is that the money used to employ a foreign diver like his salary, food, medical expenses, etc., can be kept in the pockets of Saudis and used in other ways for their households, extracurricular activities, etc.

      • Muneeb May 9, 2010 at 10:56 pm #

        Yeah. thats what they claim. It did touch it very much. We have pretty good oil based economy but that dont mean that it wasnt touched. they are wrong

        @islamicarticles the money wouldve stayed in banks. when the money is circulated/ spent its good for the economy!

  3. islamicarticles May 4, 2010 at 12:22 pm #

    Thanks for the clarification. I do admit that I’m glad to not drive sometimes when I witness what my husband has to go through with other drivers.

    • ksadriverdiaries May 9, 2010 at 9:36 am #

      True… but most of those other drivers would be replaced by the women who sent them. So in a way, the streets would be replaced with different drivers. Safer ones if statistics are true about how women drive.

      • islamicarticles May 9, 2010 at 6:09 pm #

        Yes insha’Allah. A non-Saudi businessman that has lived here in KSA for a long time suggested Saudi Arabia deploy pink taxis like they are using in Dubai.

  4. islamicarticles May 2, 2010 at 3:13 pm #

    I agree with you, let all women drive. Not all women want to stay at home, take a taxi, use an illegal driver or bum rides off of friends and family. My husband has been hurt by his country but still he loves it. I keep reading about those non-Saudi women that say we are making too much of a big deal about not being able to drive (usually the ones that think women should stay in the home unless she goes out with her husband) and Saudi women saying they are happy and don’t want to drive. I wanted to ask you as a Saudi woman, how do you feel about those Saudi women who say they are happy with their lives and don’t want to drive? What makes them like that?

    • ksadriverdiaries May 2, 2010 at 4:50 pm #

      well… i know a few that say that too… some say it because they don’t have a driver’s license and don’t know how to drive. So in a way, they dont know what they are missing or believe its too difficult for them to learn.
      Others say it because she has three drivers at home and can afford to have her driver wait for her while she does her errands… even wait outside her school or uni. And lets face it, who wouldn’t like to be driven around whenever they wanted to and not worry about navigating traffic or parking? I’m not a fan of driving, but i think its a necessity to be able to get from point A to point D and stop off at B & C on the way without worrying if my sisters or mom need the driver or if he had his lunch or dinner break or sufficient rest.
      Some just say that because they’re on the defensive, they don’t want to admit the truth to a non-saudi, because they feel its unpatriotic. I don’t see a conflict with loving your country while still being able to see its shortcomings.
      Usually though, at some point or another, they are stuck in a situation where they have no transportation or have to fight over the driver, and they’ll admit the truth. Its frustrating.

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