Welcome to the before salary end-of-month food collection of Filipino overseas workers point of view!
Aye! Aye! To those who can relate. No more words needed. He he he!
5:00 in the morning, we are wide awake, singing old songs karaoke, having beer and chips while we laugh and insult whoever were singing among the four of us. Me and my flatmates.
Tomorrow’s off, all of us don’t have work, very rare we will have the same rest day. We grabbed this opportunity to chill, laugh and to chit chat, coz after this back to normal, back to reality. We will barely see each other’s faces again, we are like robots with the same routine everyday, work and sleep. Work and sleep.
I miss being a teenager, no damn responsiblities after waking up having hang over being drunk. I don’t need to think shit the next day. Oh well, we can’t turn back time. This is the reality now. For the young ones, enjoy what you have now, it’ll end soon LOL! And if there is some error on this post, I think you will understand me why. Cheers! 🤗🤗🤗😛😛😛
“EEEEEWWWW!!!” This will be your hair-raising scream once you see these pests!
BED BUGS will be one of the most hate thing here in U.A.E. In my 30+ years of existence here on earth, never have I ever seen a bed bug, at least not in my home country, maybe we have there but not same like this. When I arrived here and stayed with my friend looking for a job, we stayed in a 3 bedroom flat somewhere in Bur Dubai with Filipino men and women, at night I will be awaken with something that’s crawling on my neck, my arms or my legs, at first I taught it was just a normal cockroach or I am just dreaming, and I usually ignores it. Or I am also too much occupied thinking that time what will be my life here in Dubai or because I am too tired for the all-day-searching-job and walking.
So, how can you get rid of this? For me the best solution is to call a PEST CONTROL and let them do the thing. But we can not always do this right??? And it will cost us how much in Dirhams?
Guys, are they welcome in your place? For me, it’s a BIG NO! NO! as they will give you nightmares, stress, itching and scratches, and the worst, when you have visitors and notice that you have “pets” lurking in your flat how are you able to explain them? It’s a shame. Here are some tips from wikiHow on how to get rid of them. Have a safe and free bed bug life. ♥♥♥
As an expat, the things you need to know being in a foreign country aside from shelter, food, temperature, are… ITS PEOPLE…
Changing your environment is not that smooth as you can imagine, especially if you will be away from your home the very first time, adjusting your life in a strange land will take time. One of the factors that affect us are the one who surrounds us.
“Mag-adjust na nga lang sa kapwa mo kababayan ang hirap minsan, ibang lahi pa kaya?” (Dealing with your own countrymen are sometimes difficult, what more with other nationalities?)
Good thing for first time Overseas Filipino Workers, UAE doesn’t give much hassle to adjust with its residents, you know why? You will see almost all establishments have Filipino “kabayan” (fellow countryman). This also applies with other nationalities here, expatriates from different parts of the world reside and work here, UAE is on the top 10 countries where expatriates choose to live and have a job.
Either you will live and work with your own country people, other nationalities and combinations (for big companies). You will not be only seeing locals here (Arabs) rather than a bunch of expatriates from all over the world.
Most Expatriates that resides here are from:
Don’t worry much of your English knowledge and accent, you will be fine, this is not a Western Country that you need to be, hmmmmm, slang, good at diction and pronunciation, not everyone can articulate English well. Although you will meet different kinds of people here from different parts of the world, the thing you need to worry is how to deal with each and everyone of them, their attitudes and characteristics, which I think are the same when dealing with your own countrymen, there will be irritating, rude, sensitive, lazy, kind and arrogant. The government here treats people equally, and there are rules about being racist and all which is strictly prohibited. So if you wanna show your bad manners here, I suggest that you won’t.
I’ve been living here for almost 6 years. In general, UAE residents and locals are fine and there’s not much to be afraid of, in fact I feel safe here and already built friendship with my co-workers, their families and others. Let me consider myself lucky being with other nationalities who treats me well and even as their own family.
So here we are, we got some information regarding the house/space rents. Your shelter is OK? Now let’s talk about the “food” here in Dubai or the United Arab Emirates in general.
If you think you gonna be missing so much Filipino Cuisines here, nah!!! Almost everything are available in this land. From your fave pansit canton, vegetables, itlog na pula, sardines (cans), GG (galung-gong) and even TUYO (dried fish) which other nationalities hate too much to smell. LOL!!! 🤣🤣🤣 – but beware tuyo here are expensive “ginto” ika nga, the tuyo that we hate sometimes back home – “lagi na lang tuyo ulam” is kinda gold here… If you miss cooking pork, don’t worry, selected supermarkets are selling them. Also available are ingredients like mama cita, magic sarap, patis (fish sauce), bagoong (fish paste) and so on.
Or if 1 day you are that too lazy to cook, there are lots of Filipino well-known restaurants here, our very own Jollibee (🎵🎤I love you Sabado 🎤🎵) already invaded Dubai, Chowking, Max’s, Cabalen, Lamesa and so on. There are also some small Filipino restaurants which serves home-made cuisines like adobo, bicol express, bulalo, sisig and more, it’s real “nagkalat sila” (they are everywhere).
Adjusting your taste buds are not that hard.
I am sure you will also enjoy other cuisines. You are in the Middle East, so why not try some Arabic delicacies? Which I guarantee you will never regret. Try the Hummus, tabouleh (salad), kebab, shawarma, falafel and many more.😛😛😛
Indian Cuisines are also one of the main food here, why? The number one expatriates living here in the UAE are from India, next are from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Philippines and so on. Honestly never have I ever taught of enjoying this delicacies with some of their freaky spicy food, all my colleagues are from South India, so what do you expect? You can try their Biryani (fish, mutton or chicken – 1st photo below), appam, puttu or South Indian combination of different vegetables serve on a banana leaf (2nd photo below)
So, if you are not that “maarte” (picky), you don’t need to adjust much with what you eat back from your home country, because ALMOST Everything are available here, from Asian cuisines like Philippines, China, Japan, Thailand, India etc, to Western, Arabic and many more.♥♥♥
Leaving your country for the first time can be very, very hard. Just like what had happened to me. I’ve been working in my country for more than 10 years, leaving your comfort zone would not be as easy as you think. Your family, your friends, neighbors, colleagues, the life you’ve used to, your routine and environment will change instantly.
Before my flight, I am too excited, and nervous as well, searching my destination country, the people, temperature, rules, crimes, etc… But as the day of my departure is approaching, the butterflies in my bellies are moving more and more, hahaha. And when that day finally came I can’t move my feet, leaving your family behind. I told them not to bring me to the airport because what I’ve heard from people leaving the country, it is much harder if the family are with you to say goodbye (our place is 5-6 hours travel by land to the airport). So literally, I was crying so hard, released my arms from my sleeping angel, my youngest child, so painful that I need to get my things, put it inside the car. Giving my two other children, my son and daughter a never ending “words of wisdom” explaining things and reminders (that I think I’ve told them millions of times already) There’s no turning back. I need to do this and be strong.
I arrived the airport and still nervous, you know why? I am one of those Filipinos that will try their luck to pass the immigration without any hassle. I am exiting the Philippines going to Hong Kong for 2 days (tour), then from there will go to the Middle East. The interview went well, Whew! They kept on asking me questions, again and again, trying to make me feel more nervous and maybe I might give them wrong details. But maybe, I am destined to leave the country that day. Then I arrived Hong Kong, alone… eating alone, talking to my family on skype that I am safe. Good that the next day is my flight going to U.A.E. or else I will be crazy. 🙂
As I stepped my feet here in the Middle East, Aha! at long last, I am here after the too much waiting, crying, traveling, butt-aching in the plane. My friend and High School mate named Richard picked me up. So this is Dubai. As we are in the Metro Train, he was telling and showing me places, the names etc. etc. but nothing was registering on my mind. I think I left my brain inside the plane. I am still worried, again why? I came on a tourist VISA, now it is up to my luck again to find a job.
Competition here is very strong, you are competing not only with your own “kabayan” but rather with different nationalities, Indians, Pakistanis, Russians, Chinese, Thailander, Indonesians, Arabs and so on. A resume is very important and how you defend what’s in there are far more than important. Be confident, pray and more LUCK as well.
Luckily, before my visa expires I got one. But the struggle doesn’t end there, you really need to adjust, the way of living, especially your home, here, it is normal to own just a “space”, home is the most expensive thing here. You want to be more comfortable, pay more. For food, Filipino cuisine and ingredients, spices are everywhere. As you are abroad, you will work, encounter different people with different characteristics, attitudes, and you have to deal with it. Even the smell 😦 . For private companies, it is normal to have just 1 rest day, and usually, it’s Fridays, not like in my country that we have Saturdays and Sundays. For me it is OK now and already used to it, as you don’t realize the days are going so fast because homesickness doesn’t have any expiration, it will attack you anytime, communication with your family is the number one treatment. I am already working here for almost 6 years in the Middle East, but still, more to learn. For OFWs, the best way to survive is being strong and always remember the reason why we are here, our FAMILY. Life is not that easy as we know it, but it always depends on us how to deal and be happy in our own simple way. We have our own problems and we also got our own and different kinds of luck. Be responsible, follow the rules wherever country you were in, keep safe and be alert all the time too. & Don’t TRUST easily.
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