Tuesday, 22 September 2009

The Driving Force

“You mean to say you’ve been here in Dubai for almost 10 years & don’t have a car????” asks acquaintance incredulously.

“Yep” I reply, very amused at her reaction.

“But why???? How????” She asks & I can see the her eyes darting around the house wondering “Gosh have I put my foot in it, don’t tell me they can’t afford one”

“Simple, we both don’t have a driving license” I grin.

“Sheeeesh, how do you guys manage?????”

We get this reaction from most people we know. Actually when I really think about it I don’t blame them one bit for reacting the way they do. Sometimes when I wake up in the middle of the night I can’t believe it either.

I take you back to 1999 when I came to Dubai. I enthusiastically signed up for driving classes & infact remember clearing Parking, Garage, Hill & Signal in one single day[they are actually 4 different tests]. It was only when I started training for the Road test did I feel a bit of diffidence.

After 8 years of misusing the clutch & the brake & ignoring all the traffic rules in India, driving according to rules in Dubai came as a rude shock….to top it after driving on the left side of the road for so many years it took quite sometime to get used to driving on the right. The lane system was something I didn’t at all believe in…I never understood why I had to accerelate when I had to change lanes, why couldn’t I just slow down & then change??? To top it, when I saw a vehicle coming at top speed from the side lanes I just couldn’t believe that the car was not going to bang into mine & so I automatically…you could say unconsciously would swerve in the opposite direction & the instructor would grab the steering wheel, apply the brakes & tear his hair all at once in frustration.
I gave just 2 road tests but knew for a fact that even if I gave 20 of them I was never going to pass. After driving at 30-40km per hour for 8 yrs it was just not possible to let go off inhibitions & do 80 and 100kms/hr.

Then I left to India for almost 6 months & when I came back, just didn’t try again…yeah, yeah I know it’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard.
And the better-half, to give him his due, had gone for classes & persevered but his job schedule 10 yrs back was hectic & it was required of him to frequently fly out of the country which inturn often clashed with his test dates & he gradually gave it up.

Actually there was no shortage of cars in the house then. My father-in-law had one & my brother-in-law also did. We never had problems going out anywhere. And the better-half had his company vehicle which picked & dropped him back. So we never felt the lack of a vehicle or a need for our own.

It was only when my father-in-law went back to India 2 years back & my BIL left to the States to study further around the same time that the realization set in.

In the beginning it was almost like being stranded. For people who wonder whats the big deal anyway please note that Dubai for all its infrastructure is a desert which radiates an average temperature of 41 degrees & humidity which saps the life out of even the toughest tribe. Within 2 minutes of being outside sweat is pouring down your body and your best shirt is ruined for ever. Everybody…simply everybody has a car….infact 2 or 3 cars in a middle-class family is not unheard of. Purchasing a car is no big deal either, it is attaining the DL which is so prized.

10 years ago it was not very difficult to get a license in UAE but nowadays its practically impossible to pass a test. Except for the odd guy who passes in his first or 2nd attempt the rest of the 95% can fill a book or two with their horror stories with the Traffic Dept.
We all know paperwork & classes are mandatory everywhere but in UAE it’s a bit over the top. And worse, they fail you for the silliest of reasons. I’ve heard horror stories where people have spent upto 8000dhs[atleast 1 lakh in Indian ruppees] & failed 14-15 times before they got their DL in their hand.
My friend told me how her boss who had held a DL from USA, UK, France, Egypt, was failed numerous times by the RTA & it became a matter of frustration & shame to him.

And worse, the municipality have all these weird rules for certain circumstances… or should I say they have no rules for certain criteria of people. Now even if we want to try for a license we can’t since the better-half now holds an independent visa from the Freezone of another emirate…..its too complicated to explain but the long & short of it is that we are not able to take driving tests in Dubai even if we want to. And that leaves us without a medium to commute.

The irony of it is that both of us got our driving license for both 2 wheeler & 4 wheelers in India before we were 20 years old. Infact I got my DL after 8 hours of classes & donated the remaining two hours to my mom who was learning alongside me. I drove my fathers car in & around Bangalore for more than 8 yrs. Sometimes I think its precisely because of my road experiences in India that I found it so hard to adjust to life in the fast lane here.

So we take taxis. We take a bus. Whichever comes first. And then ofcourse we walk. Luckily unlike before, the taxis’ have become more available now & the buses more frequent than before. And now ofcourse the metro is here making all parts of Dubai more accessible.

Both of us have nothing to say in our defence……in hindsight now I feel if only I had persevered I’m sure I would have made it after a few tries. Oh well…..when we had the chance we didn’t bother & now there is no point thinking about the ‘if onlys’.

The better-half sometimes explains the benefits to the children when they complain “Maybe we don’t have a car like the others but just look at how much we are saving; we don’t have any loans against us for buying a car, we don’t have to spend on petrol, we save on registrations and insurance. We don’t spend hours looking for parking space, we don’t have to pay parking fines….and…and all the other innumerable traffic fines…..and .... salik…we don’t have pay salik[road toll].
And nobody[as in guests] wants to stay with us” He adds wickedly.

While I shake my head at him amusedly in the background I realize I’m not exactly railing at my fate……I in a 'reverse psychology' way am glad my kids get a chance to travel in buses like how I used to and also enjoy the illuminating conversations we have with the kids as we walk hand in hand to the nearest supermarkets or restaurants after the sun goes down.

Ofcourse I realize that if we had a car I may not be talking so wisely but human beings that we are, always make the best of any situation we’re in.

Just yesterday we were walking past this vehicle which had a mukhalifa* pinned on its windshield, we automatically looked at each other and exclaimed “Thank Goodness, we don’t have a car” and burst out laughing.

*mukhalifa: traffic fine

Edited to add: Tara says "your post and this subject made me churn out a whole post myself.. ". I am pleased to present to you another perspective on the same topic:-))!!!!!!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. about to leave home, will go home and comment on the post ;)

  3. Oho so the bhoot has got into u also;-D

  4. gosh! That tough, eh? My sister got her license without even going to the agency! She doesn't drive but is a proud of a license! And I wish they'd do that in India.The roads would be so much emptier. Sigh! Wait, that doesn't mean we have to take the test again.

  5. Do you know you are contributing a LOT to the environment. Not to mention your own health because when one does not have a vehicle, one resists temptation to walk. One also discovers so many advantages of NOT having a vehicle.

    we too have managed 5 months now without a car and I don't see any need for it.


  6. LOL the grass is always greener on the other side...yeah I get ur point;-D

  7. Preethi Shenoy: I do I do....seriously its not sour grapes I do;-D.
    Its just that the weather here in Dubai is HOT & HUMID atleast 9 months in a year....it gets so icky really;-(

  8. You know what, i initially used 2 miss having our own vehicle but after a while realised it was just perfect to not have one. out here they have congestion charges if you take ur car into certain zones and so ppl avoid it like crazy. Ppl use the underground and buses fr all travel and they are so so convenient. Buses have other lanes which means you dont get stuck in traffic and the tube trains are the fastest and most convenient way of getting around. I guess DXB now has its metro right? so it mite be better..Its only when we have to shift houses etc that having a car becomes a blessing...you otherwise have to get one of those hauling vehicles and pay thru ur nose..
    But on another note, i miss the auto's:) and i also think anyone who's driven in India will find it extremely easy to drive elsewhere:)

  9. "anyone who's driven in India will find it extremely easy to drive elsewhere:)"
    LOL in a way u r right....in the sense that after driving in India u can get away in any place which blatantly flouts traffic rules & believes in "to each his own".
    But here in UAE there r stickler for rules but more importantly they are already way too many cars on the roads & they r trying every trick in the book to reduce traffic;-/

  10. If anyone can make serious stuff, funny and acceptable, it is you, Nancy !!! I admire you for this. Instead of writing - Nancy, you shld have got ur license long time back, that would have been easier - but, I am nodding my head in agreement to ur every statement that says that you are better off with out a car !!!

    Hilarious and funny - driving test episodes !!!!

    But, it is also gud fun to go around the city in buses, as we get more family time, during those times of travel. I use to enjoy bus travels, and I hope, that my kids would enjoy it one day.

  11. Can I say that I got my license in the second attempt??? :))

    But actually, getting a license 10 years back was also very tough. My brother had got it then after around 10 trials and spending a Lakh Indian rupees.

    At present, everyone in our home - me, my wife, my bro and his wife - all have a DL.

    I can't even begin to think how we would've survived without the car!!! And you have managed to do so for 10 years!

    Kudos to you Nancy. No seriously.

  12. whoa, that's a long time without driving around... of course there is a huge plus point to it. but still, i can't imagine... coming from Africa where there are hardly any roads to drive on to Canada where they have a gazillion rules and drive on the wrong side of the road, i hope i survive my test -- somewhere next month... the first time i booked it, the ministry guys went on a strike... lol

    and taxis in dxb are zomg! i remember shopping in that carrefour mall for one hour and waiting in queue for a taxi for TWO hours! :S

  13. You know, I am right now trying to get a license here in the UK. The rules are so so strict. Most people I know, managed to get it in their 3rd, 4th or 5th attempts. I got my license in India pretty easily too. And I used to drive in the US - which was again very easy. But here, its the rules! So many rules, so many new things.. it is just crazy! When we lived in London - I used to use only public transport - which was fabulous! Buses every 2 minutes, tubes and trains very frequently.. Now, after moving to Leeds, I am left with no option :( I now have to walk 1.5 miles 4 times a day, to drop off(and pick up) my daughter at school - that is enough to push me to get a license :)

  14. I can understand ppl going what ?? you dont have a car ????????

    The test is so easy in the US and still I failed twice :) the second time I was about to hit a guy coming in the other direction and the test officer had to yelll STOP !!! in bollywood style :)

  15. Uma: Thank U:-))!!!! U r right....I shd have taken it looong back but then for me light always flickered a bit later than it did for other people. U knw I sometimes think tht just like how it was for my father I too will have to wait for Nikita to turn eighteen & get her DL for us to finally have our own car;-D

    Rakesh: Yes I knw it was not easy even 10 yrs back but then women did have it a bit more lenient than men....u knw now I realise I did a big mistake by learning in a manual car. I'm sure I cd have cleared the test if I had an automatic;-P.
    Yes Rakesh I knw wht u meant by 'seriously'...only another UAE'ian will truly understand the nuances behind the whole issue:-))

    Snow: Wishing u the very best of luck for ur test. Do let me know when u clear:-)).
    And I remember those queues at Carrefour...they were horrendous. Thankfully nowadays the taxis are more frequent & the que moves very quickly.

    Smitha: 1.5 miles just 1 way or all together???? Even then I feel the weather u guys have is just super for all tht walking.
    Personally I feel tht driving around in India sort of corrupts u[if u knw wht I mean] & we cant just cant adjust;-P.
    All the best for the driving test & do hope u'll get it at the earliest:-))

  16. Totally agreed with you on the lane changing thing, the right side driving thing and the whole weird driving experience. I finally managed to get my license yesterday but I am still not sure I can drive well here.. I think I like Chauffeur(read husband)driven cars better! :D

  17. ohhh, that hard huh?..hmm, will keep it in mind if at all i move to dubai anyime..:-)

  18. License-Shmicense. Meh!


    If you have good public transport system there then goli maaro self driving ko.

  19. Ha,ha, it's fun Nancy, to compete and win on this first first competition:), and I have fallen in love with it!!Cannot resist the temptation!!

    Regarding your driving license, yes, it's really tougher having driven on Indian roads and trying to drive in other countries.

    And you know what, there are light weight air coolers stitched as dress, beginning to arrive in the market (Research has been successful and heard orders are piling up). I think that will be a best solution.

    Luckily for us, the public transport is too good to complain. So we don't find any reason to own a DL at the first place ;)

    Did I tell you-the post was again in Nancy's style, humourous. Waiting for more!! :)

  20. I think you made the right decision not to get the license- like you said, there are so many 'positive' benefits to not having a car. Hah- I had to laugh at the ending of your update- indeed, it is often GREAT to not have a car!!

  21. As you would have noticed in some of my posts, I truly badly madly want to be able to drive, but can't because of the same reasons you have stated.Its not just tedious, the classes are expensive too cnsidering the number of average number of attempts people take. Only someone living in Dubai would know where you come from. We did stay without a car for a couple of months and it was terrible. But having said that, I think its absolutely fine if you are able to manage without one.

  22. I loved your post Nancy.. I also saw the flowchart on the side:P

    I understand what you are saying and how it is like, being without the flexibility and ease of just picking up the car keys and setting off for work or fun..

    but what matters at the end is, are you happy the way things are and if not what are you doing for it..

    you post and this subject made me churn out a whole post myself.. maybe you should come over and read :) the thoughts are very mutual to an extent though.

  23. "And nobody[as in guests] wants to stay with us” He adds wickedly."

    lol...the better half sure has a funny bone!

    n m sure u wouldn't talk so wisely if u had a car!!! :D:D:D

  24. OMG Nan ... If only the weather was better, it would be a lot easier not to have a car. Anyways all the points that hubby told your daughters is so true. Family time is worth the walk in the hot sun .. er at least a little? :D

    Nice read and so glad to have you back in full form!!! :-)

  25. As always, a finely written piece and one I can completely relate to. I don't own a car too - Chinese road signs, Chinese cops who stop you, Chinese exam - no way ! So same arguments as you. And surprisingly, its a pleasant way to live ...

  26. lol..and here im dying to own a car in a place like sg where the public transport is one of the best in the world! there is just something so kool abt driving ur own car!! :)

    plus i looove road trips! :)

  27. Nancy, U guys are an environmentalist's dream come true. :D And i am sure the positive outlook helps big time!

  28. when I saw a vehicle coming at top speed from the side lanes I just couldn’t believe that the car was not going to bang into mine & so I automatically…..exactly the way I used to think.

    I think if city has good integrated transport system, I dont think car is such a big necessity.

  29. :)
    What can I say, I'm just so glad you feel the way you feel.

    But you know something, I don't think I'll be able to survive w/o a car here (I know, I'm just sounding like a loser) but I've so many horror stories that happen to me during the days when I don't have a car. Once, when it was in for servicing and I had to travel out of town, I almost missed my plane waiting for that damn Dubai Taxi.

    And you take walks on the road???!!! Wow!!!

  30. i finally got my du connection :D

    coming from singapore where public transport is so good that you don't ever need a car, dubai was a shock to me...now that i travelled in the bus to the Mall of the emirates i feel a bit better..and i plan to use the metro as much as i can :)

  31. Hmm.. I find that odd too, but hats off to your family for having managed so well without one. I'm sure the stress levels would be lower in your home! :D

    Come to think of it, your post reminded me of days when cellphones weren't around (for some strange reason). We managed so well, but now we simply cannot spot a person sans a mobile!

    But you must persist and get the elusive license Nancy! ;-)

  32. Me have license... eventhough me not knows how to drive...

    me no have car... :(

    but its not that i dont want...


    I want one badly... lol...

    I wont use it daily maybe... but I want to own one... lol

  33. if it's a great need then you'll find ways to get it or get around it but when you've made do for so long then you'll better off utilizing all that money saved somewhere else.

    I find the speed a big issue too while driving....I'm still not used to driving at 70 - 80 miles per hr but here in the US, a car is a necessity. The only place you can live without a car in the US is NEW YORK. A car is really useless in NY because it'll take you ages to get anyways and public transport is very good.

  34. Prashanti: Hehe the main difference btn here & there is tht the traffic dept in the US are genuinely interested in helping u get ur DL but here they r trying every trick in the book to keep u from clogging the roads;-P.
    Wishing u all the best for the DL:-))!!!!!!

    Rohini: Hey coool, Congrats!!!! U must be feeling so good about urself :-))!!!!
    And dont waste energy worrying abt whether u r driving well....ur test inspector certainly thought so when he gave u the license:-D.

    Titaxy: Forewarned is forearmed huh;-D!!!!!

    Solilo: U r right;-))!!!!!!

    Athivas: "..light weight air coolers stitched as dress.."
    U knw I read about this somewhere...sounds really good but have my doubts...ummm, wont I look fatter than ever wearing an aircooler on my body;-o
    And hey thank U for the nice words....gives the 'feelings' a boost;-))

    Anjuli: If not for the weather, I know for sure I would never have missed having our own vehicle. And I do feel good about managing very well without it:-)).

    ISH: We manage to do without one & dont crib too much simply because we have no choice. As I mentioned in the post, it is not possible[as of now] to apply for a license even if we want to. So no point wasting energy on the "If only's".
    But its darn frustrating to not be able to visit Malls like Ibn Battuta or take off to Fujairah just on a whim;-P

    Tara: I think u must be the only one who clicked on the flowchart....nice one huh;-D. Glad this post triggered a chain of thoughts. Was very happy to read another perspective:-))

    Blunt Edges: The better-half is a riot when he really is in the mood. And yes it is very easy to talk wise huh...just more difficult to practice;-D

    Thethoughtfultrain: Oh agree very heartfully abt...if only the weather was a little kinder;-(. If it was only the 2 of us it was ok, the kids tend to fall sick in the heat. Looking forward to winter now....:-)).

    Ramesh: Is ur workplace close to where u live??? If it is then half the headache disappears:-)).
    And Thank U:-))...u knw u r one of the very few bloggers who thoughtfully comment on not just the topic but also the post:-)).

    Sunshine: LOL U sound sooo young...;-D. But yeah young or not Road trips with friends is so much fun:-)).

    Butterfly: U knw sometimes I think "Boy am I glad we are laid-back like we are". Just imagine the deep frustration otherwise;-D

    Renu: LOL at tht thought...u shd really see my expression..infact even sitting in the passenger seat I get nervous when I watch the speed at which trucks & such-like goes past;-P
    "if city has good integrated transport system, I dont think car is such a big necessity."
    U r right!!!! Its only past 2-3 years the city is slowly being connected point to point by buses & taxis & now the metro. Before buses were few, taxis were sparse & it used to get really horrible;-(. Thank goodness things are changing...tho in this case we are all thanking HH Sheikh Mohammad:-)).

    Sparkling: Nope u r not sounding like a loser at all....only another UAE'ian can understand how truly one can get dependent on a car here. Our public transportation could at best be called a joke a few years back but thankfully its all changing.

    Suma: Aha u got ur connection.....great;-D.
    We too are very excited abt the metro but are in tht 'patiently waiting' mode as of now....heard its really crowded with all the excited sight-see'ers;-D

  35. Wow! That's a good one!! The best thing is that you are making the best of your situation and enjoying it too!!

    I have learnt driving twice, but never had the confidence to drive!!!! :D
    So, it's the hubby or the driver who drives me around!! :)

  36. I got my driver's license in 2005 after a crash course in driving. Having lived alone since I was 18 I never had a car to practice on. Now my husband has one and I keep nagging him to gimme a chance even though I only have a 2 week crash course experience from 4 years back.

    We had a car growing up...but I was always told all my life that girls never pick up driving the way boys do. I believed that and as a result my brother has been driving since the age of 12 whereas I am bitter cos I can't even today. When I asked my Dad about it he said he hoped by saying that, I would disprove his theory and show some interest. Funny how our minds get played with huh?

    Not knowing how to drive, I can still say with confidence that it is a truly liberating experience. I know how it feels to be able to ride my bike every where so I can assume. But it is lovely that you guys have managed on public transport for ten years. Of course I will not compare the standards of public transport and roads in Dubai to the ones here in India - but you are truly blessed Nancy.

    P.S. I am not busy - but generally having a pretty bad time. Nothing to complain about when you look at war, hunger and poverty of others of course...but difficult all the same. Please pray for me.

  37. didn't know it was that difficult to get a license in dubai. having driven in india, i found driving in the US a blessed and orderly affair:-) it is great that you have adjusted to living without one. many things in life are not as necessary as we think i guess. interesting post as always.

  38. 10 yrs without a license?!!! Now hats off to you.

    I moved to Dubai 2 yrs back and within a couple of months got enrolled at Emirates Driving Institute. And thats the end of the good part.

    What followed was just one horror story after another. In the end, 6 driving tests, more than 100 driving lessons, more than 12000 dirhams later....I finally got my hands on that coveted license!!!

    Had to really struggle without it..more so coz i live in Abu Dhabi and my work was in DIC. So you can imagine the commute.

    I've actually recorded my entire driving license experience on my blog as well. Right now, I know so much about getting a license that I can probably open a school of my own!

  39. We were in a similar situation a few months back. Though we have a small baby and it was tough to commute we did not let it stop us from going out often. We relied on taxis, buses and two feet and the pram. Having said that it has been a huge relief since hubby got the DL. I would say to all those who flunk the test to hang in there for there is sunshine after the storm.

  40. Nancy, the passing of tough tests for obtaining driving licence is the very reason that there is traffic discipline in those countries.

  41. Lostworld: "I'm sure the stress levels would be lower in your home!"
    U may have been joking when u wrote tht but it bulls-eye here. The better-half works atleast 40kms away from home & it takes minimum 45-50mins to reach home without traffic...so can u just imagine how long it takes him with traffic....incase u r wondering, the traffic is Horrible here during peak hours.
    Seriously, one of the advantages to this whole 'no license thing' is tht somebody else takes tht tension.

    Hitchwriter: LOL if ur dream to be chief blogger comes true then ur dream for a car is not so far away;-D
    ur comment reminded me.....
    Do u know most Malayalee's dream of 'somehow' buying a Mercedes???
    Its only when they reach the showroom they realise it may not be possible to buy one at that price;-o
    Believe me when I say tht every 4th Malayalee around here owns a 2nd hand Merc;-D

    A: "if it's a great need then you'll find ways to get it or get around it"
    I wonder if u'll believe me when I say tht for both better-half & me NOTHING in the world is worth too much effort;-P. We are most laid-back tht way;-/

    Shilpa Garg: Yeah we've learnt to live with it.
    I have a friend just like u....and I keep telling her Hands-on experience is very important to build confidence:-))

    Shades of Grey: Ohmigosh...I do these reverse psychology stuff with my kids sometimes....hopefully its not going the wrong way;-o
    Yes the public transport here that way is really comfortable.
    Keep urself occupied...thts generally the best thing to do when actions of others & the thoughts(urs) get too much to bear. And eat chocolate...it without fail makes me feel so much better;-D

    Lan: "many things in life are not as necessary as we think i guess."
    U r so right here.....we get so attached to certain possessions that we cannot imagine life without it.
    All our relatives & friends wonder how we manage & dont quite believe us when we say it is not as bad as they wd believe;-D

    Masood: Sheesh tht much???? thats crazy, really. Like I was telling Rakesh, only another UAE'ian will understand the situation for what it is.
    Anyways u got ur license at the end...Good for U:-))

    Elizabeth: Getting around with children is really so terrible with this kind of climate. Seriously if not for them I wouldnt feel that much abt not having a DL.
    Btw ur link is not working...its taking me somewhere else.

    Balvinder Singh: U r absolutely right here Sir....the speed we are talking about here is too much & for us to make any mistakes means only 1 thing..DEATH.
    But another problem here is tht cars clog up the roads & create massive traffic jams & it is getting out of hand. This has the traffic dept hesitating to give out too many licenses';-/

  42. Nancy,
    I'm one of those who will raise their eyebrows and ask 'Ten yrs and no DL???' How did u manage????
    I've been here for 3 years now and my first year was difficult. Though it is far easier to get cabs now! And what is worst I'm completely dependent on my car:-))
    But nice to see your blog - it's so similar to mine!!!! And nice to know there is someone in the blogosphere who stays in my part of the world.

  43. Hw many adv :P

    I don't mind staying with u though ;) Me ok with bus, walk, taxi et..al :)

  44. It reminded me of India..Hyderabad...I got my Malaysian license converted to the Indian Driving license...but driving in Hyderabad was merely impossible...even though I have been driving all my working life in Singapore and Malaysia....thanks for sharing....and now I have to wait for 2 months for my Doc to certify me if I am ok to drive...after my bypass operation...

  45. past 2 years i'm hearing the same from my friends :D.Though a few managed to get licence ovr there
    I just loved your husband's story, for not having a car.that was simply superb :) .yeahh when it come excuses, we mallus are best

    my neighbour's kids demand there mom always,not to drop them at school by car and instead, take them to school by auto,bus or in my bike(there school is near to my office) :).
    also enjoy the illuminating conversations we have ... reminds me about my bus journeys with my mom during school days...gosh getting nostalgic and homsick :) .

  46. between did u see 'yathrakarude shradyku' (i love that driving scene,like innocent teaching one old fellow for a long time and still he is confused with which is break and clutch)...this post(and my own experience while learning driving) remind me that :) .

  47. I can so relate to it. I do have my license now, but for 5 years in US, I just could never pass my driving test. Then when I took my driving test for the 10th time,
    I just had to play my "sympathy" card with the instructor.Luckily, it worked :-)
    Hey, you have been tagged and awarded. Hop over to accept it.

  48. Loved the reverse Psychology :).
    And having driven in India, you should be able to drive in Mars too :).

  49. Thanks for leaving the comment Nancy! means a lot
    how sweet of u to still remember my dying blog.. promise to update it real soon now :)

  50. This comment has been removed by the author.

  51. Minal: Oh I'm sure even if we had one we cdnt have imagined life without it;-D
    Oh there are so many of us around here...will be glad to introduce u around if u r ok with it;-)).

    Swaram: LOL it took some time to realise u were talking advantages & not advertisements;-D
    Hehe u wont be so ok when u find out how really HOT & HUIMID it is;-D

    Sukku: Hehe even I've heard traffic is hyderbad is horrible;-o.
    2 months huh....seems quite long but then HA is not something which is to be taken lightly. U tek care. Best wishes for a speedy recovery:-))!!!!!!!

    Anishthomas: LOL I knw tht scene, we always have a good laugh over tht scene...Innacent is just too good;-D

    Dilse: Sympathy card huh....wow it worked too. Cool really...I'll keep it in mind;-D
    Thank U for the award...will do it soon:-))!!!!

    BrownPhantom: Hehe...its the reverse in this case...I've noticed tht people who've have driven a lot in India have trouble getting a DL here whereas the one who never drove once there got it like in the 2nd or 3rd attempt here. My own BIL is a good eg...he got it in his first attempt. Driving in India is very 'free for all' kinds whereas here its all very controlled;-(

    Ish: No kindness involved here....as it is my blogroll contains very few people & it doesnt reflect well on me to have slackers;-P

  52. I'm sitting here laughing so hard because I just came in to comment again- and let you know how I miss your regular blog updates....but I find to comment I have to go through thousands of comments ...ha ha!! I bet if someone were to get an award for having the most comments on their blog post- you would be the winner!!!!

  53. Ah ha! For us it was first the car, then the mobile and then facebook ;).

    We did not have car the first 6 months (though it was because we were waiting for our car)...

    we refused to take the mobile because we wanted "privacy" and now we have 4 mobiles between two of us.

    I refused to go on facebook and now that I am there all else suffers.

  54. Anjuli: U r exaggerating surely;-D. But honestly my next post is going to be focussing on all those people who amble in here, read what I have to say & go away without saying a word;-P

    Colours: LOL precisely...precisely why I dont login to facebook all tht much.
    And hehe we too have 4 mobiles between us tho 3 of them are his;-D

  55. you have facebook?? Oh now you have to add me as a friend :)...and you know my name so you know how to search for me!!

  56. Thanks for that prod, Nance! I sure need it. Will do something soon!

  57. i have cousins in dubai who have cars and licences but want to give them up coz of the traffic and parking hassles. so maybe u guys r actually much ahead of the line :)

  58. Anjuli: I've added u but I have to tell u tht I hardly go on Facebook;-P

    Wannabewriter: Anything for a blogger dost;-D

    limenlemons: LOL they'll all say tht but hardly anybody who has a car will give up driving to get on local transport....mayb now tht the metro is here, things will change;-P

  59. i live in Kwt and also dont own one. Rather prefer not to. Bcos of the horrible driving habits of the locals. U never know when they will cut your lifeline short, for no fault of yours. So I depend on the public and private transport. Wife, at times, complains, but I explains the reasons abt not getting mukhalifas, parking spaces, getting stuck (bcos some idiot parked his car right in front of yours). Anyways lets enjoy what we have.

    Do drop in at my place http://q8life.wordpress.com

  60. Ohh God, yet another post so close to my heart!! :( I`m struggling to learn how to drive. When I was in India, I had a two-wheeler. But driving a car is a whole new ball game. Though I must admit that getting a licence here is not as crazy as it is in UAE. tHANK gOD FOR SMALL MERCIES!

  61. I know exactly what you mean. We've been here in Dubai for over 2 years and haven't bothered with a license either. Same problem....investor visa from RAK, so it's just too much of a hassle to go there. We've spent a fortune on a rental car and driver since we've come here, but there's no other option. Just another of those irritants of living in the UAE.

  62. Rashmirg: Good to hear the views of somebody living in a nearby country. Thank U for visiting:-))!!!!

    Piper: Wishing the best of luck with ur license:-))!!!

    Shalini: Good to hear from somebody who shares the same problem. The rules here are so inadequate really...they never cover all the options;-/.
    Luckily cabs and buses are sooo available now compared to even 2 yrs earlier. Thank goodness for tht:-))!!!


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