Dubai's Desperate Housewife

Trials and traumas of a full-time mum in Dubai

Posts Tagged ‘careers

DS, 4, would like to be a…

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When DD was about the age DS now is (four), she knew exactly what she wanted to be when she grew up: a princess or, failing that (because “how do I become a princess, mummy?”) an art teacher.

DS, on the other hand, aside from thinking he’d rather like to marry mummy, has never given it much thought. But, the other morning, we got a taste of what he may become in the future.


All those school fees and all he wants is yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum

“I want gold,” he said, apropos of nothing.

“Hmm,” said DH, in an aside to me, “a commodities trader?”

“How are you going to get this gold?” I asked DS. “Are you going to earn it? Or trade for it?”

“Neither! I’m going to be a pirate and steal it!”

[I, meantime, vow to work harder on establishing the work ethic and simultaneously strike Somalia off the list of places we could retire.]

Written by mrsdubai

December 23, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Careers advice for my daughter

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I always feel that my school let me down somewhat when it came to careers advice. Back in the ‘80s, I, like everyone else,  filled out a Jiig Cal form (remember those?) and my most suitable jobs – bear in mind that this is me, with my undisputed love of creative writing – came back as accountant and tax inspector (I was very good at maths; Jiig Cal ignored the fact that I didn’t like maths).

A successful career, DD, depends as much on smart choices as it does on hard work

A successful career, DD, depends as much on smart choices as it does on hard work

And then the school careers advisor, after telling me to study German and Business Studies at university (I chose and loved psychology), failed to point out that careers in IT and law paid a lot better than those in journalism, a fact that caused me much misery in my 20s.

Still, what’s done is done.

But nowadays I’m wondering what to tell DD about her future career. She’s grown out of the “I’m going to be a princess” stage, but still hankers after a job as a rock star (even though she hates practising her guitar). Her most sensible idea to date has been an art teacher – she’d probably be quite good, given she’s both good at art and a bit bossy.

But the other night DH came up with what has to be the perfect career formula.

“What you need,” he said, as we tried to fit all our holiday plans into a) the budget and b) the lack of available days DH has off work, “is to be a school teacher (holidays) married to an Emirates pilot (cheap tickets), with a dad who’s high up in a smart hotel chain (cheap rooms).”

Now why don’t the careers teachers tell you that?

Written by mrsdubai

April 3, 2013 at 6:42 pm

DD the fashion designer

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DD, aged seven, wants to be an art teacher, a rock star or a fashion designer when she grows up. While I bear no responsibility for the art teacher idea, nor the rock star, I have to confess to having placed the idea of the fashion designer in her head myself.

Perhaps I’m living vicariously through her.

One of DD’s early fashion designs. The circle on the waist is not a belt but her bare belly button. Personally, I think the skirt detail is a little Mary Katrantzou…

You see, despite having both an aunt and a grannie who were professional artists, I could never draw. It was so bad I was thrown out of art class aged just 12 for using a ruler when told to draw a telephone for art homework (the straight lines were important to me).

Apparently, art should not involve a ruler, but a free hand. The (young, blonde, married) teacher was so appalled she threw me into metalwork class where I fashioned an enamelled copper brooch of a pig’s bum with a curly tail and gave it to my mum for Mother’s Day (what a sense of humour the metalwork teacher had). The art teacher, meanwhile, went on to sleep with one of my classmates (male, handsome, at least).

I don’t think she liked girls.

Anyway, I could never draw. I was also always pretty rubbish at fashion. Having worn school uniform from age five to 18, I really struggled out in the real world. I only feel it’s in the last five years that I’ve found a sense of my sartorial self, so it staggers me when DD effortlessly puts together amazing outfits.

In fact, I love having her in the changing room when I’m shopping, because she makes or breaks an outfit in a second. “Mummy, that’s so not your colour,” she’ll say, rolling her eyes. Or, “Why are you trying on those trousers when you know that shape doesn’t suit you?” or “Mummy, it’s really not that ‘wow’.”

At the weekend, I found a couple of drawings she’d made of fashion outfits for fictional figures.

“Do you want to design some more outfits, and we’ll take them to the tailor and get them made up for you to wear?” I asked her in a fit of parental madness, and with a long, hot summer looming.

Her eyes widened with disbelief. “Really?” she said.

“Yes! And, if your friends like them, we could get more made and you could hold fashion shows and sell your clothes for charity,” I told her (madly) while DH looked on in what can only be described as shock.

“Yes! Yes! I’m going to design a whole collection,” she yelped, disappearing upstairs with her Maped Color Peps and a load of recycled paper.

What on earth have I done?

Written by mrsdubai

June 25, 2012 at 9:43 pm