Kuwait's population is comprised of over 50% expats, people from all over the world, that aren't originally from here. England, Australia, the US, etc. I think mostly for the huge oil industry, teaching, etc.
Alas, Kuwait doesn't really LIKE all of these non-Kuwaiti's here.
They're making it INCREDIBLY hard for expats to become residents and making it very hard for expats to get Driver's Licenses. The country is actually on a mission to kick out over a million expats in the next 2 years. They're deporting people right and left.
|View from my apartment|
I came here on a Visa 14, a visitors visa. Thanks to the great company I work for and the Sponsor I have, I was able to have it converted to an actual Residency Visa (Visa 18) in less than 5 months. This means I will soon have a Kuwait Civil ID, which means I can apply for an Kuwait Drivers License.
On my Visa 14, my stateside Driver's License worked here, and that's how I drove. Now that I am on an 18, I can't drive in-country until I receive my Kuwait Driver's License.
This makes my life close to a living hell. I work very far away from where I live, so now I have to carpool with someone. I also work a very weird schedule compared to most of my co-workers, as a CrossFit coach, so I end up working longer hours for the sheer fact I spend more time on base, and now getting around to do anything, like grocery shop, or enjoy my days off, will be slim to none, unless I hail a Taxi.
On the bright side: driving in this country is REALLY stressful. I'm really looking forward to having someone else drive so I can actually RELAX on my way to and from work. It's a rather long commute, anywhere from 30-60 minutes depending on traffic. This is time to check email, browse CrossFit Mainsite, respond to blog comments, do my makeup, read a book, twirl my hair, take shameless seflies, whatever, things I feel I rarely have time to do anymore.
Hopefully we'll have some more CrossFit Level 1 Trainers hired soon. They will be able to drive on their stateside license until they get their Visa 18's, too, and carpooling with fellow CrossFitter's .... is just much more fun. We'll probably be working a similar, if not the same schedule, too, so that'll be nice.
Hopefully I can get my Kuwait License, soon. Right now, it's taking anywhere from 8 months to a year. I only want to be here for another 8 months. Boo.
Here's to feeling lucky and staying optimistic. *fingers crossed*