Tuesday, July 17, 2012


The Saudi Arabia study abroad trip was life changing.  I am now working with The Walsh Group in Chicago doing demolition on the Cline Avenue Bridge.  I am having a blast (literally), but I can't stop my mind from wondering back to Saudi Arabia. Since my return, I have told all my friends about our adventures.  They also think that they would like to go see what Saudi Arabia is like. I would like to thank everyone that helped the Saudi program happen. Words can not express my gratitude.

In Dubai and leaving for home 7-6-12

We have now been in Dubai for about 2 days and we have seen a couple of the world’s biggest malls and some of the world’s finest hotels. We went to the world’s tallest building and looked down upon Dubai as if we were God overseeing the city.  We were able to go to the beach in the middle of all this fun and wouldn’t you know it the ocean was hotter than bath water.  I am sure we were sweating in the water, which reminds me that this is the hottest climate I have been in yet.  The humidity is like Indiana’s hitting 100% and heat like Arizona around 110 F. I would walk down a sidewalk and after about 50 feet I would have a layer of sweat.
 Right now we are traveling back to the states. So far it has been good…. besides waiting in this terminal for 3 hours waiting to board our flight at 2 a.m.  Our desire to get back home and see our family drives us at this point and we shall not falter.  If I am correct, it is about 5 hours to Frankfurt and another 9 hours to Chicago.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

living in saudi

Hello everyone, 
I have been trying to do different things in my free time this week; like getting a hair cut, bowling, and this weekend Adam and I may possibly go to the desert to ride 4-wheelers.  The hair cut I got was quite possibly the best hair cut I have ever received, no offence Dad (who normally cuts my hair), but they made me look like Captain America from the avengers movie. P.S. – it only cost me 3 dollars.  Now let’s talk about bowling.  Adam and I had talked about going to the mall to walk around /window shop after work.  As we were walking around the third level of the mall we stumbled across a random bowling alley with panoramic windows viewing the city buildings below.  It was like an American oasis!  It was a lot of fun, especially since I won, haha. After bowling we walked around long enough for Adam to get chased by a perfume kiosk man who wanted him to smell his cologne and I became a victim to a cologne dowsing. Honestly, my arm still smells like cologne… at least it helps me smell good. Finally, as Adam and I were eating kabob last night we talked about experiencing something adventurous. We decided a four-wheeler ride in the desert would fit that description.  It is still pending with our driver and liaisons if we can go, hopefully we can though.  On a different note, I’m adapting better to the life style over here.  The living and work environment over here feels less stressful than America.  But I do miss family and friends back at college and home. I would need a vacation every 2 months to keep from missing them too much. Regarding vacation, that reminds me that you’re required to leave the country at least once every 90 days because our issued working visas are only for 90 days. Although, some people manage to get 180 day visas, they are the lucky ones. Well that’s about it for now, I’m going to try and get out to the jobsite today to do some inspections. Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sorry about the delay..

Today i looked at the calendar and saw that we only have 2 weeks left of this trip. The other guys and I cant believe how fast this time has gone by. Today, Paul Richardson took us to Ad'riyah which is the site of the ruins of the old palaces of the Saud family (about 700 years old). Since the site is still under restoration, we had to get special permission to enter the area. It was really nice to be able to explore the area by ourselves.

As Mike said, we have been working on fire/life safety stuff at KSU. Peter Strother and Milton Ewell have been assigning us buildings to go and do inspections on and then compile a report on the items that are either missing or need correcting. Tonight, we are planning on going to some more markets and get some dinner out. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

life in riyadh

Hello everyone, I must share my frustration about using the notes app on i-pads. I had a page long blog written up for the readers to enjoy and I pushed something that deleted the whole thing, this wouldn’t be a problem if there was an undo button, but there isn’t. So from now on when I write long blogs they will be from my lap top haha. So today I will continue to update you all on what I am learning and experiencing.  Lately, at work I have been evaluating paths of egress for emergency safety.  I was assigned my own building to evaluate.  It’s an important job and I have been very excited to do it. 
I skyped home last night and chatted with the fam. My Dad told me how excited  mom had been from being able to bargain for flowers at the greenhouse and it reminded me how much I am like my mom because of this story I am about to share.   A couple of nights ago we went to a computer market (the guys and I). My item of interest was an HDMI cable to watch movies from my laptop on the t.v. Long story short I bargained my HDMI cable really cheap and after that I was gun hoe on everything I could find. I found that I loved to bargain for things like; my external laptop speakers, new ear buds, a computer mouse for my laptop, an external hard drive, and a couple other items. Okay, maybe I got a little carried away, haha, but it was a great night. So now I need to talk about some things that may intrigue you guys back at home so here is part three.
Ramadan is approaching here. It is about a month long fasting period for the Muslim religion.  Muslims can’t drink, eat, or work from sunrise to sundown (first night prayer).  We will be leaving before then but the consultants will still be here. The consultants will take on night shifts from 7pm to around 3 am during Ramadan.  There are just a couple of rules during this time like; stores do not open until 3 or 4 pm every day and you aren’t allowed to eat in any public area until dark, out of respect for the people fasting.
Random news- I was not awaken by the sounds of jack hammers this morning.  They have finished excavation across the street finally.  The rock here is very hard so it takes a long time to dig here. Usually the top meter of earth can be removed by a bulldozer but after that they must use jack hammer attachments to break the rock up. I believe it took them a month and a half to dig 5 meters deep on a plot that had dimensions of about 200x100 ft.  That’s about it right now…. Until next time, Thanks for reading!

Monday, June 18, 2012

A Weekend in Riyadh

Tim Here-

Here are some pictures from this past weekend. Thanks Paul and Jim for showing us around the city!
Sweet bridge that spans across the whole Wadi.

We found a stream in the middle of the desert, and Matt told me he could skip any rock... I proved him wrong. 

Really really dry soil.

Camel poop!

Little kids that kept on spying on us during dinner.
Paul Richardson says he's working on getting us all personal Ferraris...  I'll take that blue one!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

A day of good exercise

On Friday we went on a walk with Paul, Jim, and Sunil.  We stopped on our way to the wadi to check out this pretty cool looking bridge.  In the picture from left to right is Tim, Sunil, Adam, Me, Paul, and Jim's finger on the top of the screen.  Shortly after we took the picture, we got a nice surprise when someone based jumped off of the bridge.   We went a a decent walk along the wadi (arabic for water) and got some sun too.  Later in the evening Mike and Peter joined us to walk around downtown Riyadh and the Faisaliah Tower.  We stopped at a hole in the wall resturant Indian resturant that was delicious even though none of us have any clue what the name of it was.  We finished off the night by checking out the Ferrari and Lambo dealership.  It was a lot of fun and a nice break.