Blogs from Qatar, Middle East - page 3


Middle East » Qatar » Mesaieed July 4th 2013

Since our network has been down all week and our electric was out today for area maintenance, Indiana and I decided to rent quads and go dune bashing. Tony was supposed to go with us - in fact, it was his idea - but he wound up having to work. So, Indy and I headed down towards the Mesaieed area. I had tried to find dunes previously, but I guess I didn't go far enough south. We stopped at this pretty resort area, Sea Line Beach Resort, to get money - that would be a nice place to spend a day, FYI. Then we were able to rent quads for 150 riyals each for one hour - not too shabby. Note: it may be a bit more, but we figured on a weekday when everyone else ... read more
Indiana's boo-boo

Middle East » Qatar » Doha June 26th 2013

Qatar in June = HOT. Since returning from my excellent break in Turkey, I went full work mode and tried to finish up some major projects that had been left dangling. The best was finishing the project that I was initially brought to Qatar for - 8 months, multiple delays, 35 weekly meetings, 4 presentations, 15 professional staff and countless support staff, and 1770 pages of reports later: We're done! Yay! Now I'm trying to catch up on the smaller projects that are yelling at me literally every day, thinking that they are the most important project in the world. I don't want to leave them hanging, but i have to prioritize my work as well. One of my key strengths is multi-tasking; I detest wasted time! Unfortunately, I am pretty much working solo at the ... read more
Sandstorm that lasted all week

Middle East » Qatar May 18th 2013

Well here it is - my last day on this island! I am so excited to leave and sleep in my own bed, take a real shower, wear real clothes and put on some makeup!!! Oh, and see other women! Seriously, it is the little things that I miss right now. Cooking my own dinner. Going to watch a movie at the theater. Driving my car (even in the dreadful Doha traffic - I wonder how it has changed in the last 30 days). And having a Beer! Yes, 30 days later and I've learned a lot. I don't know how good a long summarizing blog post would be here, so keeping in theme with my goal for the past year, I'm just going to list the many firsts that I've encountered. Definitely more than my ... read more

Middle East » Qatar May 9th 2013

21 days later, and I'm still here working! That's a long time to go without a break - there are no holidays or weekends here. My coworkers have been here longer than I so I can't complain too much. Instead, I spend my days dreaming about what I will finally do when I DO have time off! Since I last wrote, we had not moved a centimeter from that spot where we had troubles. We had weather, then a small fire on board (which needed to be investigated for protocol and parts replaced), more weather, and then trying to pull out our casing which was stuck. Day 1 was not successful in using a tool that was supposed to be our solution. Day 2 was even worse as we tried to modify the solution which worked ... read more
Julius with a new friend
He let me pet him and cuddle him
The bird hung around for a while!

Middle East » Qatar April 30th 2013

It has been a while since I've written, but I just wanted to let you all know I am still alive. I'm currently working in the middle of the Persian (sorry, "Arabian") Gulf. This project has been an ordeal since Day 1 and the field work is no less difficult, but we see the light at the end of the tunnel, so I just need to hang on for 7 more weeks!!! Then, I'm going to be a traveling fiend. Currently, I am working 12+ hours a day, along with everyone else. Since I'm stuck in the middle of nowhere, it's not so bad: work, eat, sleep. As soon as the field work portion is complete, I'm heading to Dubai for a few days to unwind, get a massage, and start the process of moving out ... read more
me with onshore crew


Middle East » Qatar » Doha April 27th 2013

Our next stop is Doha, Qatar (pronounced “cutter” by most) and Abdul is our guide. By the way, most of the guides are expats from other countries as few local Emeriti’s do that kind of work. The first excursion stop is to the Souq Waqif, a shopping bazaar established in 1847. You can bargain up to 20% off for the spices, foods and other traded items available, we’re told. This country has 2.5 million people with 200,000 native citizens. Only Qatar citizens may own property permanently with foreigners not owning land and owning housing for up to 99 years at which time it’s returned to the government. Various visas cover a variety of visits including tourist, business, and non-permanent (i.e. working). Health care for the citizens is free as is education. Auto fuel is 25 cents ... read more

Middle East » Qatar » Doha April 11th 2013

I know - it's been weeks since I've written and now I'm going on yet another driving rampage... but there are some good photos at least, right? This morning was just difficult. I can't stand when people call the type of driving in Qatar Aggressive Driving. It is not Aggressive Driving, which is driving so that you can get where you need to be without standing aside and letting people (literally) run all over you. No. Here in Qatar, I call this driving Complete Disregard For The Lives of Others. Harsh? Maybe. But oh so true. People here use their land cruisers or lexus SUV's to shovel you aside into a guardrail, tailgate you at 100kph while flashing their lights, speed up when you try to pull out of side road, and straddle lanes until they ... read more
Appetizers at Syrian place
Lamb meat wraps with yogurt
Lamb and kibbeh soup

Middle East » Qatar » Doha March 5th 2013

Yeah, so pretty much since my geologists friends have arrived, my wonderful diet has gone out the window! I'm not too bad, but I was really enjoying that downward progress on my scale. Oh well. It was worth it. Beer, food and much need company. There is not much to tell (shocking, I know), but we went to the souk a few times, to The Pearl, hotels, and just around where ever. There is a decent variety of food if you can take yourself to it. Most places are concentrated in certain areas which always seem to have trouble with enough parking spaces. The souk definitely has the most multi-cultural cuisines and the prices are not too bad. The Pearl is limited and expensive. The food at the Villaggio is basically crap - there are a ... read more
Kouzi Lamb
Iraqi custard

Middle East » Qatar » Al Khor March 2nd 2013

Friday morning, I got up early to prepare for a Qatari road trip! Jeff and I made plans to head north and drive around to see what Qatar has to offer. Granted, it's not much, but it was a fun day. We made it to the northern tip, Rawais, and drove as fast as we could, or stopped for random sites - like a giant fatty lizard that I almost ran over! We drove from Doha, to Al Khor, to Al Thakirah, to Ruwais and near there, then southwest towards Dukkan. We never made it to Dukkan, instead detouring to Zekreet, where I'd heard there were some cool geological formations. We wound up stumbling upon a convoy, and joined before trying to decide if we wanted to continue. We at first felt that what we could ... read more
Al Khor
Al Khor
Cool Crab Shot

Middle East » Qatar » Doha March 2nd 2013

Most of Saturday I lazed about, cleaning off an on. I really need to hire a maid - I hate mopping. That evening, I picked up Jeff to head to the Museum of Islamic Art. I'd been there once before with Matt, but it is such a nice, peaceful, beautiful place it is worth going back to (and it's free). We took some nice photos and wandered about, but the place closed promptly at 8pm. Actually they started herding us to the elevator at 7:45 sharp, even though we wanted to take the stairs... Outside, we wandered down the walkway and took some pictures of the building and West Bay across the water. Waiting on Jeff's more professional photos. Until then, enjoy mine!... read more
Museum of Islamic Art
Museum Entrance
Dhows and Fanar Arabic Center in background

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