Since it is graduation season and our senior high school students are about to take the leap to reaching their dreams it is only fitting that we prepare them. Especially all those Filipinos who grew up in the middle east and basically took up their primary and secondary education in international schools. Students who are yet to experience what its like to be studying here in Manila. So being one of you guys who studied 10 years in Saudi Arabia and now living here in Manila for 7 years, here are some practical tips:
1. Brace yourselves. Its a jungle out here. The golden rule “don’t talk to strangers” very much applies.
2. Practice your Arabic. When your classmates find out about your origin, they would want to hear some arabic words. So don’t forget those things that are so popular in our arabic classes: asad, qaalam, sabahalkhayr. Or you might just want to recite the alphabet.
3. Don’t get offended. They’re practically gonna ask you “OH WOW! SO MEANING YOU RIDE A CAMEL TO SCHOOL AND LIVE IN A TENT?” Forgive them for they don’t know what they say. HAHA
4. Be patient. They may not know that Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Dubai are actually different from each other.
5. Just ride on. If your professors find out your from the middle east, they might keep calling you in class as “Ms. Saudi” or brand you with any name related to your origin. They might even believe made up stories from your classmates that your a prince or princess.
Your friends are gonna be fascinated and amazed by “simple” cars. Understand that our standards are different.
6. Don’t eat shawarma! They’re all fake. Garlic sauce, kebab and biryani are fake as well.
7. You don’t have to rush (or wait). Shops, stores, malls don’t close 5 times in a day.
8. Don’t leave your things unattended. People here aren’t scared of getting their hands cut off.
9. Ladies, fall in line. There are no such things as ladies line or ladies go first rules here.
10. Don’t be surprised. Restaurants or fast food chains do not have separate areas for single men and families. Tables and seats aren’t also separated in cubicles.
11. Learn to text and go unli. Calls are more costly than text messages.
12. Be prepared to learn. Its a different world out here. But make sure not to lose your identity.
photos grabbed from the internet. credits to photo owner.