Monday, May 16, 2011

Saudi gives the term "snail mail" new meaning

As previously mentioned, there is a shortage of good young adult literature in this country. I know it sounds like I'm making a big deal out of nothing, but you have to understand that I left a classroom library of over 300 books, and a school library that was regularly stocked with the latest releases and I came here--the desert of literacy!! I'm starved for good literature, and my students are too!

I've told you before that I'm co-sponsoring the reading club at school. We have made do with our first novel choice, though not all of the girls are loving it. Before we left for spring break in April, we decided on the second and third novels that we would read and I placed the order on the Amazon UK. I'd been told that using Amazon.co.uk would get the books here faster.

More than a month later, I'm still waiting. We're about a month away from summer break and we've only been able to read one novel this entire semester because of this delayed arrival.

It's absolutely, positively driving me CRAZY, and it's not Amazon's fault. According to the DHL tracking information, the books arrived in the country less than 2 weeks after I ordered them. The issue is Saudi customs. In the past, we've gotten packages from home that were stamped with an arrival stamp, and then another stamp when the contents cleared customs. There was a difference of MORE THAN 2 WEEKS!! It took more than two weeks for my package to go through customs!!

THIS IS RIDICULOUS!! I'm all for customs, don't get me wrong. I am A-OK with them rifling through my packages because I have nothing to hide. I'm not shipping drugs, I know nothing about bombs and I'm not getting my mom to send me secret shipments of porn! So take a peak that the homemade skirts, greeting cards and Christmas candies...but do it quickly please!!

And this delayed Amazon order is just hurting the kids! Ok, them and my aching desire to finally have something good to read, but THE KIDS! Think about the kids!!

Lesson definitely learned here. I'm bringing home and empty bag this summer that will be filled with my favorite books and a few new additions to my library because I can't make it another school year without a good book!!

Vicariously yours,


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