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Old 02-12-2012   #1 (permalink)
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Becky returns to Saudi Arabia

Long story short, Becky was invited to a week long conference in Saudi Arabia.

Day 1

Hi honey,

We are at the hotel right now. Had a long flight here but a really great plane. Waited around the airport for a while because we lost two of our group(later found) along with my luggage and four others, all from Texas. Bags are still not here but it doesn't really matter what we wear because they gave us each a beautiful abaya and scarf to wear.

We were rushed from the hotel to go to the opening ceremonies with Prince Sultan bin Salman giving the speech (in Arabic). Then there was a banquet with wonderful Arab food including whole kids on beds of rice. We got back to the hotel at around 11:00. There is a bus leaving at 7:00 am tomorrow to take us to attend an international symposium on retrieving artifacts that goes on until 3:00 pm! This will be mostly in Arabic. Since some of us are tired there will be another bus at 9:30 to get us there by 11:00 to be greeted by the Prince. After two hours of rest we will be going to the Al-Masmak Palace from 6:00 til 10:00. Somewhere in the day we will need to go to the airport to identify our bags if they show up.

That's the bare bones of what has happened so far today. The room is great and my butler's name is Jamel.
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Old 02-12-2012   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffandbecky View Post
Long story short, Becky was invited to a week long conference in Saudi Arabia.

Day 1

Hi honey,

We are at the hotel right now. Had a long flight here but a really great plane. Waited around the airport for a while because we lost two of our group(later found) along with my luggage and four others, all from Texas. Bags are still not here but it doesn't really matter what we wear because they gave us each a beautiful abaya and scarf to wear.

We were rushed from the hotel to go to the opening ceremonies with Prince Sultan bin Salman giving the speech (in Arabic). Then there was a banquet with wonderful Arab food including whole kids on beds of rice. We got back to the hotel at around 11:00. There is a bus leaving at 7:00 am tomorrow to take us to attend an international symposium on retrieving artifacts that goes on until 3:00 pm! This will be mostly in Arabic. Since some of us are tired there will be another bus at 9:30 to get us there by 11:00 to be greeted by the Prince. After two hours of rest we will be going to the Al-Masmak Palace from 6:00 til 10:00. Somewhere in the day we will need to go to the airport to identify our bags if they show up.

That's the bare bones of what has happened so far today. The room is great and my butler's name is Jamel.
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Old 02-12-2012   #3 (permalink)
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whole kids? Maybe she's referring to baby goats? I hope.
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Old 02-12-2012   #4 (permalink)
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Day 2

I didn't get much sleep last night. I just could not settle down until about 4:00. I got to meet the Prince today and accept a certificate on my mothers behalf. That was after a couple of hours of speeches... My bag is supposed to be at the airport but I can't get it without the claim check and our hosts have it. It's chilly here in the morning but warms up later.

Going to meet HRH Princess Adelah tonight. Just the women. Should be interesting.


The Arabs do eat a lot of goat and mutton. When I talked with her this morning she said that the abaya was already getting old.
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Old 02-14-2012   #5 (permalink)
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i'm curious as to how the kid's tasted
i suspect they were tender and delicious

i think the prince should just give her his credit card and tell her to buy whatever she needs
i think she needs diamonds, ftr
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Old 02-14-2012   #6 (permalink)
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i'm curious as to how the kid's tasted
i suspect they were tender and delicious

i think the prince should just give her his credit card and tell her to buy whatever she needs
i think she needs diamonds, ftr
I doubt that Becky would ever bring it up to her Saudi hosts, just not the polite thing to do. However I am under no such restrictions. I used the standard "get of Saudi jail card", made a call to execs at Aramco. Assets were deployed that day (their language not mine).

Forget the diamonds, go for the Saudi gold. 18k and sold by weight at about 1.2x spot (American 14k jewelry generally sells for triple spot).

Today,

We came back from Ma'adain Saleh today at around 7:00. Our private jet turned out to be a military propeller plane. I took pictures. It was pretty bare bones, no windows very noisy. The tombs were beautiful, lots of interesting rock formations in the area. Had another good lunch, lots of Arab food. Tonight a group of us ate at a restaurant at the hotel which featured different kinds of meat. I had a bite of baby camel but didn't have gazelle. Dhub (lizard) was not in season.

Ma'adain Saleh is the Saudi equivalent of Petra in Jordan.
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Old 02-16-2012   #7 (permalink)
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I'm curious: is it possible for her to travel unaccompanied by a man since she is obviously there as part of some professional conference? I've read different accounts of western women being held to the same restrictions on everyday travel about town as Saudi women.
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Old 02-16-2012   #8 (permalink)
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I'm curious: is it possible for her to travel unaccompanied by a man since she is obviously there as part of some professional conference? I've read different accounts of western women being held to the same restrictions on everyday travel about town as Saudi women.
Aramco staged the shindig and the SCTA paid for everything. Between those two gorillas I am sure all the t's were crossed and i's dotted. Becky doesn't have a lot of free time between scheduled events and tours.
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Old 02-19-2012   #9 (permalink)
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Hubby loves this part of the world when he travels.....hope Becky is having a good time.
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