Nine years after I started this little blog, I am so happy to be at my computer, counting down the minutes until women in Saudi Arabia will be able to drive legally. Over all these years, reading about the issue from so many angles, it was still such a delight to learn the news last September that the ban would be lifted at last.
And now the day is here. People are sending out tweets of congratulations. Women are tweeting that they are getting ready to drive. Others are tweeting to women to take the responsibility of driving seriously. And the world watches. Another tweet mentions that filming and photographing women drivers in order to mock them is forbidden and punishable by fines and even prison. I trust that cool heads will prevail and people will be mature about this change.
Fortunately, Saudis like to stay up late, so I think those who go out driving in 47 minutes (yikes it's coming up soon) will find that there a lots of people on the road. I hope there will be some peaceful celebrations and ululations (zaghareed).
My novel, A Caravan of Brides, has a chapter in it imagining that on the first day of women driving (set in 2018 by pure luck) that women stand on the steps at the Traffic Department and let out zaghareed. I don't think that will happen tonight, but maybe someday.
Now it is nine minutes to midnight. Now it is two minutes. I eagerly await coverage of the day, especially what people post about their first drives.
It is so wonderful to be alive to see this change take place.
And now, the moment has arrived. Congratulations and Hallelujah!!!!!