Today is my 3rd day in Riyadh. When I first arrived, after being picked up from the airport I was driven to my hotel at speeds of about 90MPH. As we weaved in and out of traffic I looked out the window at a large hurd of camels. Once we reached the hotel I was shown to my room. Its pretty nice and has all marble floors, a 42 inch plasma screen tv, Persian rugs, an oversized California king bed, a huge wardrobe and a really nice living room area with a big couch some nice oversized chairs and large coffee table.
At this point I met with a couple guys from the SRCA, one of which was wearing the traditional robe and head gear here called a "thobe" I believe. He pointed to the large fruit basket, platter of pastries, bottles of juice, and water that was prepared for me. "Is this to your liking?" "Is everything satisfactory?" he asked. They both explained to me I was welcome here in Saudi Arabia and they where very excited to see me. One of them kept calling me "Mr. Mike Paramedic" which I thought was pretty cool.
After being properly welcomed they left my room so I could rest after my 24 hour plane ride. A couple hours later my door bell rang, I opened to the door to find room service guys with bow-ties delivering my lunch and also a 2 pound box of dates to snack on. I met with my friend Aaron and the other U.S. Paramedics and 1 UK Paramedic yesterday. So far they all seem like nice guys. There are only about 10 of us right now, and half of them are being transfered to the Helicopter for flight, so that only leaves me and a few other guys as the only ground Paramedic service for a city the size of LA. Hopefully some more guys arrive soon. It is currently the weekend here and I will start processing in within the next couple days.
Ill keep you all up to date often. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.