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Newcomer to Muscat - non-driver!

Hello all!

I will be moving out to Muscat to teach at the International School of Choueifat in around 4 weeks. I don't yet know the exact location of my accommodation, but I believe it will be near to the school (so Al Hail/ Seeb area).

I don't currently drive, although I would be looking into taking lessons and trying to get my license ASAP after arrival - although from reading various things online, it seems this is a lengthy, arduous and costly business!

My questions are:

1. What is life like for a single expat female in Al Hail/ Seeb? Are there any shops/ cafes/ rsetaurants/ places where alcohol is served or can be bought?
2. Does anyone know of any reputable English speaking driving instructors in this area?
3. How affordable/ feasible would it be to get around Muscat by taxi when necessary? And can anyone tell me which firm/s to use? Rough prices to negotiate for journeys?

Obviously, I want to try and get a license and a car as soon as I can, but I would welcome other realistic suggestions for getting around!

Thanks in advance!

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