Witnesses to Oman’s Renaissance transformation

Dr Thomas and Dr Meena Thomas, two of the many who have been living away from their homeland for more than 40 years made a revisit to their earlier days in Oman in time with the celebration of the 49th Oman National Day.
From the few kilometres of rugged pathways to dusty walkways to today’s superhighways, and from the small houses to today’s white coloured buildings, this expat medical couple has witnessed the transformation that has swept the country.
“We came to Oman in 1970s and there was hardly anything that can be called a highway or a hospital or anything of that sort. Having said that, the signs of a nation galloping to progress were felt across all sectors, and we were confident then till today”, says Doctor Thomas and Dr Meena who had been running their Al Maha Polyclinic since as early as the 80s.
“What attracted us since those days to Oman is invariably the hospitality of the people and the way they treated expatriates. Being doctors, we were so much respected and regarded as a member of their family, thanks to the different generations of Oman,” added Dr Meena Thomas.
Dr Manal Iqbal, a General Practitioner currently with Excellency Group of Companies in Abu Dhabi who was brought up in Oman and spent her entire youth here, has a different story altogether to tell.
She was a toddler when she was relocated from Pakistan to the Sultanate and grew up along with an Indian family here.
“Wherever I travelled, I always felt being called back to Oman as if it’s my one and true home. I always have this yearning of wanting to fly back to the Sultanate,” said Dr Manal.
“Oman has that feel. It’s one of its attractions, of making any visitor feel that they are at home. It is, to me, is because of the environment, the people and the ruler who guides the nation to further progress,” Dr Manal said.
After her Grade 12, she went to Pakistan for higher studies and later got married and came back to Oman. Even then, she had already prepared to begin her career in Oman.
“When I came back to Muscat after marriage, I had decided to join a hospital in Oman because this is not my second home, but my first and that was how my career started,” she said.
When Dr Manal eventually had to move to the neighbouring country in pursuit of advancing her career, it was a sweet-sour decision and ‘a big big step in life.’
Dr Thomas, Dr Meena Thomas and Dr Manal are a few of the expatriates who have made Oman their home away from home and cherishes their sweet memories with the nation at every possible occasion while praying for the country and its good people.