In general, the salutations SHAIKHA or SHAIKH are used to call upon a female or male with some degree of respect.
Others use it to point out that a person is rather daft.
Me, i use them to cover my shortfall; where for some reason or another i cannot remember names of people whom i have just met, or have known for some time.
This is no joke, i have gone for weeks directly dealing with people but never knowing or remembering their names. I know it's rude but hey, the brain cells must be rapidly deteriorating in the area of my brain used for recalling names.
Once, during my secondment in Qatar, my colleagues and i went out with an employee of the bank who was gracious enough to offer, WHICH WE GLADLY ACCEPTED. After arriving at the location, he excused himself to go to the little boys room. Foolishly i turned to my colleagues and asked them what the guy's name was, i was met with blank faces, then grins of despair; the bastards could not remember his name either. So for the remainder of the evening i continued to call him 'Yesh Shaikh'.
I fear this is also happening to me in Oman, i have not been invited out much and am keeping away from such invitations for fear of being exposed. Today i was asked by a lady, 'how come i call her and three others SHAIKHA', i lied through my teeth and told her that it was out of respect for all of them...if only she knew the truth.....
Now faces, are another matter; i never forget a face, the name that goes with the face is an utterly different matter.....
Sometimes I use a name association gimmick where u link the name of a person u've just met with someone u already know, but if the name is not common, then basically u should know that i'm F*ed, and have no choice but to fall back on my old reliable aids; the honorary salutation.
MY POINT being, if you ever meet me in person and i greet you with SHAIKH or SHAIKHA, then you should realize that i have already forgotten your name....don't take it personally......and i apologis in advance.