Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Ask an Omani! Women and Queue jumping

OK readers. Here's our first installment in our new series: "Ask an Omani".

Please feel free to comment and add to the views, or email another burning cultural question to undercover(dot)dragon(at)gmail(dot)com.

Why do Omani women get to push to the front of a queue?

During your stay at Oman, there would be some unusual scenes that raise many questions. One of those scenes is Omani women pushing to the front of a queue. Many foreigners who are used to “first come first serve” are astonished and sometimes offended (depends on how many times it happens to them). Since I am a woman, I must say… I don’t complain. It is convenient after all… However, you will find these days that women started thinking that this is their birth right. Sometimes they even start pushing in front of other girls “never happy with it”.

I’m not sure when this phenomenon began, but you mainly see it in groceries and banks. These places are usually crowded and mixed. The act of women standing in a queue between men hovering behind their backs and sometimes hearing them inhaling and exhaling, and being pushed slowly to almost touching the one in front of you is very uncomfortable. Because many Omanis respect their women – holds some truth to it – they started offering women to go in front. (Of course there are the few men that do this on purpose to check women out…)

Others would hope other men do the same to their sisters and mothers.

All I can say is if I need something done at the attestation office in Shatti, I send Ms Dragon while I wait outside. She gets to go to the front of the queue and I avoid 2 hours of a scrum to get to the counter...


  1. Ask an Omani.

    Why can't you parallel and just dive onto the kerb?

    Why do you take up 2 parking bays in a supermaket ( I know the answer but wanna hear it from you).
    Why do you have to make cave man sound effects when you spit?

    Why do you have to spit in open public places? (swine flue!!!)

    Why do you push to the front of the Queue when driving even if that lane isn't going to your destination?

    Why do you not put seatbelts on your kids?

  2. DA

    Thx for the comment. But...
    follow the instructions:

    Comment on this thread, and EMAIL me questions.

    Oh, and be less of an ass about it, obviously.


  3. Hi Dragon- Good series starter.

    Whats the use of having a wife if you can't send her into the fray? Saves two hours and you sit in air con'd car.

    One evening I needed cash for quick trip to Dubai. Of the three ATMs in my area, two were not working. Went to third and there was long Q'. Woman with young kid gets out of car and moves to front of machine. We men just looked at each other. At the ATM, behind the screen, there were beeps, bings, whirrs, then more beeps, bings, whirrs, chase the kid, more beeps, etc etc. Next two other women drove up. After listening a few minutes to the beep symphony, they joined the first lady behind the screen. Now there was beep, bing, whirr, giggle, giggle. Many of the men left, but I had to get some money so I could travel.

    All you can do is laugh.

  4. You got them anyway and a bit of satire missed the target or at least yours.

    Perhaps we should have the most evasive questions?

    And nothing about ass...I would ask about that!

  5. What people don't take into account was the Iranian revolution in 1979..... this brought back a strict Islamic propaganda...... suddenly the attention to abayas and the likes......

    People in Muscat never used to wear these black nasty abayas......


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