The Jewel of the Gulf: Oman!
Trip Start Jul 28, 2009
121Trip End Aug 10, 2010
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Where I stayed
Al Naseem Hotel
Oman seems so far away from the neighboring unstable country of Yemen. The sultan believes in creating a highly skilled workforce and therefore, education is free for all Omanis. The economy is stable and we have not found ONE beggar
The sultan of Oman overthrew his father in 1970, who did not believe in free education and ruled with iron fist. However, Quaboos (Sultan), went to university in the UK and said that Oman should be run like a company. He has certainly done an excellent job because everyone seems content in their jobs and their lifestyles. I heard from one of the tour guides that the Sultan does not have any children and that he does not like women!!! Hmmm……makes you wonder how he can still be respected in a culture which frowns upon that type of behaviour.
Our last day, I went to the Souk in Muttrah and met the nicest shop keeper, Mohamed. We sat and drank tea and he told me that he had 7 children, the youngest was 9 months old and the oldest was 24 years old. I asked him about finding a wife for his oldest son and he said that nowadays, the families don’t arrange marriages as much, only in the villages, and that his children will choose their own husband or wife. Times are even changing in this part of the world.
Oman is famous for its khanjar knives, which are curved daggers. Mohamed told me that in the old days, all the Omani men would wear the khanjar on a daily basis, but nowadays, they are worn during holidays as part of ceremonial dress. So I decided to buy this as my souvenir from Oman. Mohamed helped me pick out a nice dagger that was within my budget. Some of these daggers can cost over $1000 USD.