WARNING: Time for an inane worthless rambling coz there are other issues cluttering my mind and this is a form of diversion.
With the many upheavals and sudden unforeseen challenges of Q4 '11, some decisions had to be made. And I guess you can say, given the circumstances there was not really much time for me to think ponder and plan through even though I'd been looking around at some options since moving to Dubai in May 2010 of bringing my girls over to join me and for the 3 of us to have our own little family unit away from all the usual dramas of past years.
So in having found myself in a reactive state of being, I had to expedite a lot my decisions to what was going to be good quickly in the short term solution for the kids and me. I decided that's it the girls are moving to Dubai pronto.
Now saying that out aloud is a lot easier than the actual process of it. They were on 3rd term holidays when this was decided. All the British/American curriculum schools in Dubai new academic term starts in September after the summer vacation. Indian curriculum new academic years commence in April. What do I do???
Cost wise the former would be a liver and spleen every month. The latter would be the same for maybe quarterly. So I opted with Indian - started my school hunting - not much luck with some of the 'prime' schools - they didn't even entertain my inquiry calls.
Finally I came upon GIIS and the Registrar was extremely helpful and was able to understand my predicament about school placement for the girls. When they were here in December, I had them do their assessment tests with a decision to embark on French as a 2nd language instead of Hindi. Thankfully they were accepted and were scheduled to start April 1st.
Now began the next phase of exercise - getting them into Dubai on a Dependents Residence Visa and me being the sponsor. I swear to you this being a typically Patriarchal society, I hit the first wall when I was asked for the No Objection Cert/Consent Letter from the father. Are you kidding me? The man hardly even pays his monthly maintenance on time, so we had to find a proper way forward. And thankfully having FINALLY gotten my divorce decree, and registered my divorce back home at JPN and getting copies and attestations done for an arm and a leg all the way. Everything had to be done at Ministry of Foreign Affairs Msia, then at the UAE Embassy and then again at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs UAE - and everything at some exorbitant cost.
(Note: Jacob if you troll my blog - yup these are YOUR two daughters as they are now since you've not since them in 10years)
I got rejected the first time by some patriarchal ass at the Immigration Dept. So I went again, with all my paperwork and went to the Ladies section and explained and showed more papers, paid more fees, more typing fees, more translations fees, more attestation fees and FINALLY I got my approval for Entry Permit for the girls to travel into Dubai on.
Coughed up 2 adult fare one-way tickets and the kids flew into Dubai in mid-Jan as UMRs - they had fun flying in and the next day I was back in the Immigration Dept waiting to process their Residence Visas - thankfully I got the same ladies who congratulated me - some empathy was a reassurance that not every point of this journey was going to be a nightmare, there'd be pockets of rainbows and sunshine, I left with the much needed Residence Visa in their passports. I did it with a little help from friends and well-wishers who come out of nowhere and help me when I'm down.
So school placement down, Visa in hand - then came the school fees and transportation fees, books, uniforms, clubs, games, shoes, bags, tuck boxes .... in a month I have written cheques amounting to over AED65k just for 2 kids - 1 academic year. How am I managing this? By cutting back on everything else I can think off and going bare essentials.
The kids started school April 1st and are settling in to the new routine. They've had an extended vacation since arriving in Dubai after attending about 3 weeks of school back in Seremban. Ashna as usual goes neat come back neat, Kasha is my little messy queen - goes pretty comes back like a ruggamuffin ahahahhaha oh well, reminds me of my brother as a kid - goes in white crisp uniforms returns in some shades of brown. Here's to Ash and Kash and their new adventures at school and in Dubai. Life's a rollercoaster girls, learn to smile as you ride it.
And people are wondering how this old lady is doing lately - this a picture of me on a REALLY REALLY Good day .... imagine what a bad day looks like then if this is a really really good day - GAWD!
Anyways am coming up to completing my 2nd year in Dubai. A lot has happened since and a lot more will continue to happen. I mean there's no use in fighting the obvious cycles of life.
I figure after all the time it took me to get through my divorce, make a decision to look abroad of opportunity for myself and finally moving the girls so it's ani and the BratAngels in Dubai (for now) it's a constant evolution we are in.
I'm not getting any younger. But hopefully getting a little smarter along the way - Not too sure about this though.
I do however note my patience levels are on extreme ends these days - either saintly enduring or demolition derby. The objects experiencing the former are lucky bastards because if it was the latter am in a very vile bile spewing mode now and smashing faces would be an extremely pleasant time pass for me.
But then that's just raw me, a mishmash and I make no excuses for me. Kinda decided I'm tired from living for others. I mean I still am sorta living for others but this by choice, for my kids. But otherwise the proverbial 3rd finger is freely used because at the end my sanity is at stake and mental health in jeopardy trying to please everyone else especially when none of what you do is ever enough for their own demented little minds.
We're into Q2 '12 but nothing's really panned out the way I planned, only good thing is kids and me are together here in Dubai. We got our little simple place we call home, they have school, I have a job to pay those bills and fees. It's not the Gulf Dream of wiping my ass with Dirhams and swimming in pools of it. Everything in modest amounts almost embarrassingly humble but our hearts are happy together - that's the bottomline.
Happy Trails everyone, my mind is a clutter of too many things, but eventually everything sees light at the end of the tunnel. There's God and there's Karma - both will eventually make me smile someday.