Moving To Saudi Arabia

I accepted an offer of employment at King Abdullah University of Science & Technology. I'll be an "English Writer" in the communications department. I fly out of DC to Saudi Arabia on 8 May. I'm still working out what this means for things I'm involved in here in DC, but I know I will attempt to maintain my garden blogging. I am working on figuring out how to ship some of my plants to Saudi Arabia. There are a few that I'd rather not give up, addict that I am. Some have sentimental value, some are truly one-of-a-kind, some may actually do better in the Kingdom (outside, possibly--indoors is air conditioned pretty much 24/7/365), and some just rock my socks! The rest? Well, I'm working on that, too, as well as divesting my other worldly goods (does anyone want a huge bedroom set?).

With changes in every aspect of my life, it seems a good opportunity to change how I blog as well. I will be mothballing The Indoor Garden(er) and blogging as The Expat Garden(er), for various reasons. You'll always be able to access your favourite posts here. I'll be taking a few weeks off before starting to post on The Expat Garden(er), at least until I get more settled. I am also thinking of becoming more regular once I return to blogging, or at least having well-defined post categories, which will give me better direction in generating content for the blog and you readers better direction about what to expect when you come by.

Local Plant Profiles will be irregular but hopefully full of depth and interesting information for people both in the Middle East and elsewhere. I envision myself stumbling upon a new-to-me plant and then trying to do research on it to figure out what it is. Maybe I can find someone in the area who is a native plant expert, or maybe a good reference book.

Plant Photography posts will probably occur with regular frequency, but text presence/amount would be irregular. I have slacked on my photographic education and exploration in the past year, and this would help me continue learning and improving. I imagine these could be photos of desert plants that may be additive to a previous local plant profile or foreshadow an upcoming profile, or plants from gardens at the university or elsewhere during my travels, or even my own plants. I'd try to make them pretty, unique, or interesting in some fashion.

New Acquisitions posts would probably very infrequent. I imagine I'd try to keep minimal (heh, restraint? Me?), because the assumption is I'm not staying in Saudi Arabia for the rest of my life, and any acquisitions would have to be shipped back (and that's just a huge hassle) or left behind (but I want them...!).

Plant Updates would be irregularly regular. That is, maybe not every week, but you can probably expect one with some frequency. This will cover how my plants are faring in their new home, whether anything interesting is going on--the same types of posts I do now labeled under "Die Pflanzenfortschreibung."

Culture Through Cooking will be recipe posts of food I'm learning how to make. I may or may not focus on regional cuisine--in DC, I tended to focus on Japanese, Korean, and baked goods. Who knows what I'd end up concocting in Saudi Arabia? My cooking has always been intermittent, with long gaps between periods of experimentation, and I usually have to plan ahead if I want to blog about a recipe I'm preparing, so I wouldn't think I would post recipes more than once every month or two.

The Tourist posts will be exactly what they sound like: posts about my travels from the region, whether to nearby towns or to other areas (even the U.S.). Every trip won't be posted, probably only those with some exceptional cultural information, food experience, or plant-related adventure. I anticipate at the very least monthly trips, so these posts would be once per month at the most.

I think this works out to be an average of two or three posts each week, possibly, during a busy month. I will not even attempt to maintain a post schedule (such as "Artsy Garden Photo Monday" and "The Tourist Tuesday"), because I know I would never be able to live up to that. It seems I anticipate about 1/3 of the posts to be Artsy Garden Photos--I hope you're all okay with that!

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7 Responses to Moving To Saudi Arabia

  1. Wow, quite the change! Well I hope you enjoy it and make sure to chronicle the trip. You may be able to leave some plants with local greenhouses. Then when/if you come back they'll be available. I clicked on the blog link but it seems someone hasn't invited me to view it... :)

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  2. Ah. Good point. Fixed now...! And, yes, quite a change. I will definitely be chronicling the trip--I have two book ideas I'll be developing while living there. I think it's entirely realistic to get a few books out of the experience...!

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  3. You're doing it! Congrats, I hope our email was a little bit helpful anyways, and you will LOVE the food :) Can't wait to see what the Expat has to say when you get settled!

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  4. Congratulations on the offer (and acceptance.)

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  5. Whoa, that sounds like a big adventure - I've been toying with the idea of going abroad, but that's a hell of a lot further away than I'd ever consider!

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  6. NOOOOOOO! You can't mooooooooooove!

    Who will care for Titan?

    (P.S. Bring me home a pygmy camel. I wants one!)

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  7. hey! get in touch with me, over here in Dubai! I'd be more then happy to have you visit anytime!

    (get my email through Owen or Steph!!)

    Tara

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