Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

"Welcome to prison" smirks my driver as we pass the last check point on the Causeway and enter the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. And he is right. Despite the fact that working in Saudi is no different from working anywhere else; in fact the people I work with, are very pleasant. Everything else breathes 'security and restriction'. The armoured car used for commuting. The hardened intrusion alert room in the office. But above all, the compound guarded by military personnel who listlessly lean against the 50 mm machine gun mounted on their Humvee. A prison, albeit a luxurious one with its 240 square meter three bedroom villas, swimming pool, gym and on-site restaurants. But nothing beats the freedom to leave your own home to order pork chops with beer in a pub.