Wednesday, May 23, 2012

You Know It's Summer In Saudi When..

-the second you step outside you feel as if you've walked into a convection oven.

-you at the same time dread and wish for a gush of wind or even a breeze

-that gush of wind feels like someone is blasting the hairdryer on your face on full heat

-you take the sheets out to dry in the sun and after five minutes they have dried into something resembling crispy potato chips

-Saudis will only be seen outside after 8 p.m

-when all the trees and bushes in the desert have become brown and the camels have stopped eating them due to burnt taste
-camels hair turns black from burning in the sun

-your children thank you and actually laugh at pouring ice cold water on their heads and faces

-you can cook eggs on the car hood

-the car door handle is so hot you need to open it with the sleeve of your abaya

-you are thankful for the abaya that protects from second degree burns when you enter the car now turned sauna and sit on the leather benches

-you leave the house in your bikinis, under the abaya

-all movement in the city stops from noon to 4 p.m

-the Saudis finally think it's warm enough to swim in the pool but you think it has turned into a hot tub

-when your sunglasses turn foggy the minute you step out

-your face looks like a cooked tomato after about 2 minutes spent outside

-the hose water coming from the water tank is almost boiling hot and you can say your goodbyes to cold showers

-the temperature doesn't drop below 40c even in the night


-that Bebsi cola you left in the sun for 10 minutes has started boiling

-that book you read outside has melted and all the pages dropped off

-your cats scream and run back inside in panic after touching the scorching hot ground

-you discover that outdoor candles can handle fire, but not the Saudi sun!

Check out the Saudi-Finnish temperature table here:
http://blueabaya.blogspot.com/2010/11/saudi-finnish-temperature-table.html

30 comments:

Robyn said...

yep-you easily forget how hot it gets in the summer in the Middle East. eeek

Farooq said...

hmmm bikinis under abayas..thats a first. is that when guys hope that a gust of wind blows the abayas apart lol.

Well written as always laylah. have always felt asking for leather seats in the car is really asking for trouble.

Star Vogue said...

Yeah we are getting there to over in the UAE!
http://starvogue84.blogspot.com

ربة منزل said...

For some reason, Saudis still stick to their habits even in America. We never go out for dinner or shopping or plan any event till after 7 pm. Maybe we go to the mall, but only in the afternoon, never go anywhere in the morning.

Huda said...

lol the bebsi cola starts boiling! gross!
Btw is that a camel skeleton in the bottom pic?

Noor said...

Bikinis under abaya ha I do not know about that one but I do wash my hair and put it up under my niqab and hijab which makes me cooler. When we go out in the sun it seems weird bc we never go out before isha lol.

Proud Muslimah said...

Sounds like my version of hell. lol. I don't do heat. At all. Wisconsin is plenty hot for me.

And the comment above mine (I think Rabia Manzl?) is so right. When I lived with Saudia in California, it was amazing how nocternal they were. Dinner by 7-8, bed by 4am, awake by noon or 1 pm.

And is that last picture a skeleton of a dinosaur!? lol. It's huge!

Yunnan said...

Oh dear - and I thought I'd lived in some hot cities! NEVER gets below 40C? sounds pretty hellish to me. Your air conditioning must work pretty hard. A post or two back and you had some beautiful photos of the desert in bloom. The spring looked so beautiful, sad that it just degrades into all the plants scorching, ouch. I liked the comment about the melting book: #KSAsummerproblems, hey?

Wonder if people wear different coloured abayas in summer? Black is the worst colour for absorbing heat, surely peopel would turn to something a bit more reflective?

Laylah said...

Farooq-that's what the closed model abayas are good for ;)

Laylah said...

I guess you're nocturnal by nature :)

Laylah said...

Huda-yes it's a camel skeleton I found in the Rub Al Khali, Empty Quarter!

Laylah said...

Noor-give it a try sometime lol
That's a good trick washing the hair, have you tried just wetting the whole hijab? I do that when I go out to the park in the daytime :)

Laylah said...

Proud Muslimah-remember the heat here is dry heat so (unlike the coastal cities) it's far more tolerable and does not feel as bad as it sounds most of the time :)

Laylah said...

Yunnan-the air conditioners struggle to keep up, I had to adjust them all the time and still some of them keep over heating and water starts dripping out..

There is a time in the hottest months that temperatures, at least inside the city don't seem to fluctuate much from the daytime 50's to night time 40's..that's what I call a frying pan!

No they still wear black :)

Farooq said...

The last couple of days the weather change has been drastic. I think tuesday max was 42 then wednesday was 36. Now thats a big change over a few hours. Wedneday morning when I stepped out to go to work, I found the weather to be very pleasant. Had to remind myself that it was all relative :-)

Noor said...

Yea I am sure my dh would like that haha with every step I take everyone can see everything :p

Noor said...

Blame it on the greenhouse effect scarey

Laylah said...

every step you take..every move you make..I'll be watching you LOL
Don't wear a sheer abaya :)

ava said...

Oh wow. 36c summer here in the tropics is already sweaty pits paradise. 40-50c would be murder. Are umbrellas popular there? When my family visited my dad in ksa when I was a kid, we also rarely went out during daytime. I thought the suspended neon lights/billboards were powered by magic. I found out the truth when we went out for a daytime drive. Haha.

Nabila said...

We have 30 C here in Norway and I feel awfull. But still, tights under abaya is a huge must. :D Overhead-abaya is wonderfull in the heat.

Karen King said...

It's 50 here, too. 50F that is...

Anonymous said...

That is insane weather! I was in Spain during the 2003 huge heat wave....40 degree Celcius weather every day of the summer and I thought I was going to die. 50 degrees is just nuts!!! Keep hydrated! Francesca from Ottawa

Laylah said...

ava-true that in the tropics 50c would be suicidal to go out! Thankfully in Riyadh it's very dry so more tolerable. It never gets that 50 in Jeddah!

Laylah said...

Nabila you have 30c there now??

ava said...

Yes to bikinis fosure!! if I end up in Dammam, I would most def customize an abaya with strategically placed slits for myself. But the thought of being fully covered in black+summer is giving me claustro anxiety. I'll prolly get used to it...eventually, hopefully ;)

saf said...

I was inspired by your post and tried bikini-under-abaya - very cooling indeed!

Anonymous said...

i enjoyed reading all your posts ! you really have a gift in describing / writing stories ! you should open a twitter account if you want to be more famous . keep going :) >

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Same here in Muscat too, but at least we've got the mountains and monsoon for the weekends:)

Sarfraz Abbasi said...

Reading above im just glad the summmer is over here in riyadh. its a balmy 36C at 7pm, it just feels very pleasant and wonderful.

Iggy Pickle said...

Sounds almost like Fresno, California, where it cools down to 107F at night...