Monday, July 30, 2007

Another Sleepless night.

It was around 4:00 am in the morning and i was still wide awake. I tried gulping down numerous glasses of water, i got up and walked around, i did some push ups in a effort to tire my self out. I also picked up my son's PSP and played for a while, seeing that it too was not having a effect on me, i turned to reading.

I remained awake until 7:30 am, when i finally fell asleep and did not wake until just after 12:00 in the afternoon.

So why did i have such a hard time sleeping? You ask.

The reason is simple, i have a big chip on my shoulder when comes to the issue of ownership of Land or a house in our country, Bahrain.

I logged on to the net yesterday after an absence of two to three weeks and one of the few sites that i must visit first had posted an article on this matter.

It's a point of view, the experiances of one person on his plight to achieve peace & security. But it's not the whole picture of what is going on in our society.

Yes, there are lots of Bahrainis who own land, and yes, some saved, other got loans from Banks and yet others got assistance from their parents.

I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth, or one lying anywhere close to me for that matter. I was lucky that my parents put me through private school which led me to getting a good job after graduating from high school. I was not lucky enough to continue my studies until now. I have worked hard to get where i am today but i still have not achieved my goal of owning my own home, this is because of some bad decisiond and the every elusive good luck, which i have none.

Now, you can't get away by saying that people blame the Government for all their problems or only seek assistance from them to get out of a problem, or that people don't bother to get off of their lazy asses to work hard to increase their purchasing power, or save up as much as possible and then apply for a long term housing loan for the remaining amount, there is more......

People have expenses, yes there are people out there who spend like there is no tomorrow and then bitch about the fact that they are unable to afford their own residence and are forced to live in a rented apartment.

Ok, people should learn to spend less and save a bit more, if they haven't started already.

But, when you are not given an opportunity, when the flood gates are opened to GCC nationals and foreigners who have loads and loads of money, levels up to which you are unable to compete, then here is the biggest dilemma. Not the only, but the BIGGEST, which is totally out of our control while the other factors may be in our control.

The price of land was increasing in Bahrain, but not at the rate that is has in the last couple of years. In 2005, i read a statistic posted in one of the GULF financial magazines, if I'm not mistaken (IF I FIND i have retained a copy i will surely post it later on when I get back home). I was astonished to find that Bahrain, the smallest land mass in the GCC had over 4000+ foreigners who owned private land, and non of the other countries, not Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE or Qatar or any other, had foreign ownership anything close to that figure. The point being LAND ownership.

So one can be forgiven if they believe the root of problem in Bahrain is only due to the facts that (a) we do not save enough, (b) or don't work hard enough, (c) or for any other reason for that matter..................The fact of the matter is we are trying but each time we get near the dotted line, it gets moved a couple of notches by policies made and implemented by the Government.

Bahrainis need to get good high paying jobs, but to do that they are required to have a high level of education to enable them to compete against the influx of highly educated foreigners' brought in by Employers. Additionally, while on the subject of employment, Employers should be restricted from recruiting a foreigner as a replacement of a Bahraini who has received a better opportunity somewhere else and has left. This is happening more and more, opportunities that must go to Bahraini graduates are being sold off abroad. (Don't get me wrong, I'm no hate monger but one must be fair and honest about the on goings within our country)

So................ go ahead and write your columns, and the self help advise that may or may not help others, it's a point of view that should be out there so everyone can read and get a complete picture of the ins' and outs' of the problems we are facing. This is our god given right.

Me, it's going to take another couple of days to get this out of my system, but by posting my views on this blog, i have vented a lot of the frustration and despair built up in me.
Yes, i will go ahead and read your articles, and maybe i might pick up some pointers on how to achieve my goal of owning the roof that is over my head; and I'll continue to save, and look for better opportunities to increase my income; i might even place a couple of dinars in the local Bank's saving schemes in the off chance that i might actually win something, but i won't hold my breath nor will i be sitting impatiently by the phone for the call telling me of my winnings.

No, I'll be hard at work, trying to climb the corporate ladder, advancing my education and keeping a look out for any off the chance opportunities that come my way to buy a piece of Land or a home.