Ahh...the favourite past time of all expats in Riyadh. The BBQ. On weekends, I love walking around and smelling that charcoal lighting up on all corners of the compound. We don't have the place for it, but we are lucky enough to get invitations from our friends who do, and there ain't nothin' like a good cookout.
Part of the joy of living on a compound is being able to walk around without your abaya on to visit friends living nearby. Even if you haven't made specific plans for the weekend, it's nice to get out, sit by the pool in your skimpy bikini (gasp!), and receive impromptu invites to bbq's. We've made friends here through our living circumstances that we would never have made back home. When different age groups, backgrounds, and etc. get together, it invariably centers around putting some meat on a grill. Inside these high security walls, there's such a sense of community through shared hardship that I'm sure I will miss it when I leave. At home in Canada, people go back into their holes during the week and there's no such thing as walking down the block on a Monday night to sit down on a friend's couch and shoot the sh*t. When you're away from your favourite malls, your favourite coffee shop, your favourite sushi and pho restaurants, and most of all, your favourite people, it makes you incredibly grateful for a BBQ.
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