Tea Time

Greetings lads. M’sa al khair. Inshallah you are all in fine fettle.
MB is on short trip to Dubai as family just landed out here for 2 month break and just not possible to bring them to Saudi for various ‘cultural’ reasons. The Golf (Dubai Desert Classic) on in Dubai this weekend so maybe get there on Sat or Sun before my return to Saudi. Incidentally lads, am invited for ‘out in the desert’ trip on my return to the Kingdom and will hopefully get some good photos for you all. Hope to do that next weekend.
This week’s pics lads are mostly from a small roadside restaurant/cafe that I happened across last weekend when was in need of a cup of tea.
Pressure of time this weekend lads will result in shorter HX than normal I think. Lets see how it goes.
MB sips Chi in the Afghan cafe and watches lad walking down the dusty street 

DH – The Reluctant Emigrant

Giving pride of place this weekend lads to fellow blogger, writer (presently some way through her first book) and general raconteur DH. Met DH today for coffee in Ibn Batuta Mall in Dubai.

Was expecting some kind words for the HX blog lads, but some 10 seconds into the conversation DH informs MB – “You are not using your blog in correct way MB, I will give you 2 hour instruction session in due course and show you how its done“. And like all men everywhere lads, I just took the beating, nodded my submissive head a few times thanked DH for the constructive criticism, for her benevolence and kind heart.

So lads, expect some amazing things in next few weeks when DH puts MB on the righteous path. Allah u akbar!

This weeks blog from DH. As usual DH, sukran gizan. May your blog always have traffic. Inshallah.
And as special treat for you all lads I give you pic (with her kind permission) of Irish/Abu Dhabi blogger DH, as shot today at Dubai’s Ibn Batuta Mall:
DH, at Ibn Batuta Mall earlier today
MR – Childhood
Thanks to my friend MR for allowing me to use the following piece which she posted on Facebook after the recent school shooting in Connecticut, USA. She generally writes on topics more close to her heart, and rarely on other stuff. I am encouraging her to get more ‘logical’ (private joke between us!) and I like the following:
I was reminded yesterday of my childhood by my friend Tony Jay. Thanks Tony. As a child my play time was all the time. I was lucky enough to have been raised on a farm where my friends were the cows, the foxes, the birds. My playground were the trees, the fields and the rivers.
School was my challenge as it curbed my freedom. I realised as an adult the education I received outside of school was to be the basis of how I perceive life today but I am grateful for my formal education in being to able to read and write so that I may communicate and read so many wonderful books and my education was my choice eventually as it was only till I was older that I realised which field I wanted to work in and so having said this I now refer to what has happened in America at the School in Connecticut.
I watched Sky News last night regarding this tragic event. A reporter stating how 5 year old children are drilled about what to do if their is an attack on their school. WOW……is all I said to myself. To think that a 5 year old is at this tender beautiful age is subjected to the world they face, a world where you must own a gun to protect yourself from those who also own a gun. The quote ” Live by the Sword, Die by the Sword” came to mind. I feel as deeply as everyone at the heartache of this situation but is it not a result of the mentality that the world has become.
I worked last year in a care home for Dementia and one lady who had been a school teacher said to me as we were having a trip down memory lane that the children of today are being educated by violent computor games and being subjected to all types of violence in the media..it is everywhere and I absolutely agreed with her. I told her about my childhood where I now realise it was my own imagination was my play and guns were no part of it.
I send Love from the deepest part of my heart to the families and friends in America but I also send Wisdom that all of us now realise that ALL OF US have been responsible for what happened in Connecticut and that from this heartbreaking lesson all of us play a part for change that children maybe allowed to be children. Freedom is never won by violence and children need to know that. My own son asked me at 17 asked me could I become a british citizen as I have the right to do so my mother being English but I was born in Ireland and I asked him why. He said he wanted to join the British Airforce. I told him NO and I also told him I was not going to be a part of him getting into a plane with the intention of killing people. He never asked me again and he is now an engineer. I was shocked that he asked me and that made me deeply aware of the influence of the violence that plays a huge part on all our children.
Change is so needed on this beautiful planet we live on. In light and Love Emoji
Arrived in Dubai on Tue night, camera at the ready – Mosque, Jumeirah Road, Dubai. 
Dubai Panoramic Photo
Attended a Photo night in Dubai few nights back lads and one of those who gave a presentation was the guy who shot this amazing panoramic shot of Dubai – from the top of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building. The viewing deck is on floor 126 as he reminded us, and many of us have visited that deck as a ‘must see’ Dubai thing. As he informed us on the night the distance from the viewing deck to the top of the building is the same height as the Empire State building in New York!
The guy & his assistant brought a video camera with them to record their efforts and was scary just even watching it on the night. The camera used was some high tech one brought from Switzerland just for the purpose, from a manufacturer that I never heard of, using some fancy lens that I also never heard of. The final shot is a stitched panorama of some 48 individual photos, and you can zoom in with your mouse and get close-up of any area you wish.
Afghan cafe/restaurant owner makes chi (tea) for MB in Riyadh last weekend. Most places outside the Riyadh city centre area are very basic, generally small in size and not very hygienic with very small menu selection. The TV was tuned to one of the Afghanistan TV channels and was giving us the news from home in the Pashtu language. Big relief according to the owner & his customers that the US would soon pulling out.

Dubai Parkour

Another Dubai video doing the rounds at the mo is of an English Parkour activist doing his stuff in some of the older areas of the Emirate. First section of the short movie is in the Spice or Gold Market area along Dubai Creek, and second section is from the Bastakia area (Bur Dubai). Both great places to visit if you are ever out this neck of the woods

For those in saudi on lower income, or those with small business like my Afghan friend, this Chinese make of motorbike is popular
Home deliveries are possible

Saudi Walls

I have only departed Saudi a few days lads and I discover that some Ministry has introduced a new ‘wall’ rule. All shops that have both male & female staff must now build walls within the shop at least 1.6m high to separate the males from the female staff. Its obviously a very good idea lads as it will:
  • Provide work for the construction industry
  • Prevent any funny business going on in the public areas of the shops between the male and female staff.
We Saudis can now rest easier in our beds at night in certain knowledge that the segregation of the man and the woman continues in the proper way. Allah u akbar. Read on lads:

Indian lad delivers eggs to the Afghan restaurant and is pleased that MB is taking his pic
UAE Amnesty for illegals
The UAE Government recently introduced an amnesty for all those living illegally in UAE. If you come as a tourist, or your work visa gets cancelled (after your employment ends) you have 30 days to leave the country. Or you incur a daily fine. After a long period the fine becomes unpayable for many and they live illegally.
The current amnesty involves handing yourself in to the authorities, an iris scan takes place, you do not pay any fine but you receive a permanent life ban from the UAE. You are then free to leave, and must purchase your own flight ticket. The following link relates to one family from Pakistan who can not afford the ticket:
Driver stops for Chi at Afghan restaurant before delivering the blocks
Ok lads, gotta go. Maybe bit boring this week. Can’t always be awesomely brilliant I guess. Take care y’all. Chat ya next week inshallah.

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