Day 143 - Sally (4th person I approached)
May 23, 2014 - Sally was waiting for some bubble tea. She told me she didn’t have a lot of time, but was happy to chat while she waited for her order. Sally was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. She is the youngest of two children.
“My father is Palestinian and my mother is from Thailand. My father was involved in putting together the public transit system in Riyadh. We lived in a compound, similar to a gated community, of ex-pats,” she said.
Sally went to a private elementary school for the first few years of her education.
“The last year we lived in Riyadh, a public school opened and I went there,” she said. “In Saudi Arabia. once a girl reaches the age of seven years old, they wear a hijab (head covering). My parents are very western and at home, we lived a different life than the one we lived outside of our home. We didn’t really spend that much time away from our parents. Aside from school and karate or dance classes, we were usually at home. I was aware of cultural beliefs that were different than ours. I think the differences would have had more impact if my sister and I had been teenagers. But being under ten years old, it didn’t have much impact on us,” said Sally. She is fluent in English and Arabic.
Her father had visited Canada on numerous business trips. When she was nine years old, Sally’s family moved to Vancouver.
“I remember the excitement my sister and I had about moving. I’m not sure how I knew it was going to be more liberal than Riyadh. I suppose it was based on what I had seen on television and in the media,” she said. Sally finished high school and went to university.
“I graduated two years ago. I have a major in Humanities, a minor in International Business and a certificate in Hellenic Studies. I took Humanities because I’ve always had an interest in culture and the arts. The International Business I felt would give a good balance and foundation for working in other countries. The Hellenic Studies was purely for my own interest. I love all things related to greek history, culture and philosophies,” said Sally.
Immediately after graduating from university, Sally got a position working as a Government consultant.
“I travelled around doing consulting for Government agencies. Consulting on hiring practises, training and administration,” she said.
“The International business studies from university paid off.” I asked Sally what she was doing now.
“Well, this will probably throw you a curve ball, but I’ve gone in a completely different direction. I started my own company. I’ve collected china cups, saucers and plates for a number of years. I’ve learned a lot about the different patterns and things. I’ve always enjoyed afternoon tea and going out for high tea. My friends suggested I should make a go of it as my business. So I started a rental company for high teas, tea parties, bridal showers, that kind of thing. People can rent what they need from me. I have complete sets of china that can cater for up to eight people. If someone is willing or interested in mix and match, then I can cater for up to about 50 people. The mix and matching is the most popular. Unless it’s a bridal shower, then they usually want everything to match.” #notastranger