Monday, March 19, 2012

I Finally Have an Apartment and a School!!

Family Room
    When I moved to Abu Dhabi, I had envisioned myself waking up to the view of gorgeous beaches with the gulf breeze wafting through my window. Well, Al Ain is land locked, so that isn't exactly what I got, but it could be worse for sure! I have been placed in a complex located a little on the outskirts and on the way to my school. It is only temporary and I will get to pick my own place when the lease is up in June. They pay by the year here, so when teachers go home mid contract, it leaves ADEC with lots of empty apartments to fill. They won't be renewing with this complex next year, which is why I get to move out in a few short months.
Bedroom I won't be using
Bigger room that I will use
        I am happy about this for a few reasons. 1) Normally they make you wait a full year before you get to pick a place and I only have to wait 3 months. 2) The place is furnished, so I don't have to shop now and then find a mover to lug myself to a place of my choosing. 3)I get to hold on to my housing allowance and take time to decide how I want to furnish my apartment, rather than feel pressure to buy everything in a week because we get booted from the hotel after 5 days once we have both our keys and furnish allowance. 4)Mohamed is setting up our electric,water, and gas. Jen and I also set up our internet/phone after a few short hours (insert extreme sarcasm) at Etisalat. All that being said, the place is not that bad. I just prefer somewhere with more light and closer to town. I feel fortunate that for now I can get to know neighborhoods I'd like to live, and I get to take a bus too and from school.
Patio seating at apartment
MUCH better bathroom!
Master Bath
Pool at apartment
     The apartment is 2 bedroom and 2.5 bath with a decent kitchen and family room. I will actually use the hall bath and bigger room, rather than the master bedroom/bath because they both have better light than the master. It also comes with a stove and fridge, which is nice because most places you need to purchase appliances. There is also a pool and a small gym, but I probably won't be using those as I just got a membership to the Rotana. The Rotana is a beautiful hotel/resort and has a great gym and pool. I plan to exercise during the week and relax there on the weekends!
     Now on to my new school. The place is gorgeous and only two years old. It houses both boys and girls, but they have separate halves of the building.  The staff all seem really nice so far, and I'll be working with all of them as I have landed a resource room position. I am thrilled to be able to work across the grade levels and help support the ELLs who really need it. It will be a lot of work for sure, but I think in the long run it will be less stressful than taking over a classroom at this point in the year.
     The craziest thing about my new school is that one of my heads of faculty is from Maine-Endwell. We have both taught at Homer Brink and know many of the same people. I think it's a sure sign that I am in fact meant to work and retire from M-E when I get home from this adventure. It's sounds a bit hokey, but I think it's the universe telling me not to forget about Homer Brink, which has been my dream school since I student taught there in 2004. In the mean time, I love having someone from home around who understands my love of Consol's and knows what a spiedie is!
Big bright hallways!
Main Entrance
     It is because of Lisa that I was able to get such a good deal on my gym membership as well.  A few friends and I went out for drinks on Friday night and ran into Lisa at the Rotana. She introduced us to the gym manager and he agreed to give us 50% off as long as we came in by the 25th. We went in today and are only paying $50 a month to use the awesome facilities. For those of you at home, think Court Jester, but with a beautiful outdoor pool, 6 restaurants, and a swim up bar. It's pretty sweet.
     Overall, I'm really loving life in Al Ain. It is much slower paced than the city and I enjoy the suburban feel, not to mention the fact that you can actually see the views as there are very few tall buildings. Break starts in a few days and I'm sure I'll be up to something fun, so be on the lookout for my spring break blogs!



  1. a swim up bar?! That sounds like a gym I would frequent!!

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