Wednesday, October 31, 2007


I took the dogs out to Pampered Pets today to be groomed. It is about 25 km out of town, and much to my (and Adam's) delight, we saw camels! I know, we are in the desert, but it is actually rare that we see them out in the wild. They were crossing the small road that leads to the kennel. They even had a herder. There had to be 50 of them, just walking across the road, none of them even bothered by the fact that my car was there next to them. I got some great pics! Notice also how the front legs are chained. I heard that is done so they can't run. I guess they are fast runners, because they actually have camel races in town.

Monday, October 29, 2007

The Pearl

I was driving out near The Pearl today and saw some progress on the construction. When we first moved here last year, The Pearl was nothing more than a sandbar. Now, there are roads, buildings, and of course - cranes. The Pearl is a real-estate development created on a man-made island right off the coast of Doha. It is supposed to be like the Palm Tree Islands or The World in Dubai. It should be pretty cool when it's completed, although we might not be here to see it. For more information on The Pearl, click here.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Safety first!

Now does this look like something you would do? I definately would find a better way of getting this stuff up there. In that 'hole' used to be a bunch of windows - just like the ones on either side. Notice the guys hanging out on the ledge waiting for the container to make its way over...

Yeah, right

I saw this sign today - no honking! Hopefully, this sign was just for this particular area of town - I wouldn't know since it is in Arabic! I can't remember a day where I have gone somewhere and not used my horn! Everyone uses it here. You almost have to. I mainly use it to alert the driver next to me to stay in his lane. The driving here is so bad that you have to constantly be on the defense and alert them of your presence - with a horn.

Oh, well, good luck on this one, Doha!

Friday, October 26, 2007

The Frog & Snowman

Shane and Adam "made cake" (played with playdough) this afternoon. They were both so proud of what they made, that they made me get the camera! Shane was especially proud of his frog, and Adam thought his snowman was pretty good, too!

Shakes with Daddy

Today for lunch we all went to Johnny Rocket's. We ordered milk shakes and shared with Adam. He loved it, of course!

Doha 2016

Well, we all knew it was coming....after their success with the Asian Games last year, Doha has now officially bid on being the host city for the 2016 Olympic Games. This week banners went up on the larger streets announcing Doha's plans to bid on the Games. Yesterday, they held a public launch ceremony on the Corniche. Shane and I have discussed this and wondered if having the games in Doha is really a good idea. The Summer Games are usually held in, well, the summer - when the weather here is unbearable. They have the Aspire Dome, which is a very large, indoor sports facility where most of the events were held for the Asian Games. In today's paper is an article about Doha is building the first ever underground stadium! Still, there are some events you can't host indoors...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Crazy American!

I went to Carrefour today because I heard that they were starting to carry heaters. I wanted to buy a few for this winter, since last winter the house was freezing. The tile floors and cement walls are designed to retain the cold, so in the winter (which can actually get down to 40F), it is a freezer in here! The houses also all have reflective glass in all the windows to keep the heat out. All this stuff is great in the summer, but not so great in the winter. Anyway, when I was in line, the Arab man in front of me sized up my basket and said, "Hi, Madame, you know those are heaters, right?". I explained to him that last year was very cold and all the stores were out when we really needed them, so I was going to get them early this year. I know he still thought I was nuts buying heaters when it is still 95F outside!

So long, Salam Plaza!

Today is Shane's last day of working at Salam Plaza (small brown building). As you can see, the construction around it is pretty heavy. I can't believe they let them work there this whole time. He moves to another temporary office until the Exxonmobil building (blue glass) opens next year.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Afternoon play

The days are getting nicer, so I thought a little trip to the park would be good. We met up with my friend Samantha and her kids, Robert and Catrina. The weather was perfect: not too hot, low humidity, and a nice breeze! Finally!

Adam's race car

When we left the hospital today, there was a baby blue Lamborghini parked right by the door. Adam saw it and said "Race car! Adam's Race Car!". He wanted me to put him in it instead of going to our car. It must belong to someone important (in terms of Qatari ranking) because the licence plate only has 4 digits. Apparently, the less numbers you have on your license plate, the higher up on the food chain you are. The lowest we have seen is a 3 digit plate. Our cars, of course, both have 6 digits!

No Doctor!

Adam has been getting sick a lot over the past 6 months - he has gone from getting the croup, to a viral throat infection, to now an ear infection. We can't really blame it on school since he has only been going there less than 2 months. When he is sick, we go to the pediatrician at Al Ahli Hospital. It is a really nice hospital, but it would be nicer if we didn't have to go so often! Adam knows it now when we turn onto the road that it's located. He says, "Nooooo Doctor"!

Dirt Devil!

Shane went with me the other day to pick Adam up from school. On our way out, he noticed a dirt devil - kind of like a small sand "tornado". Once we got the camera out, it was started to disappear, but we managed to get an image before it was gone completely.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Pink Party

I was invited to a Pink Party at the Ramada hotel benefiting the Qatar Cancer Society. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, hence all the pink. Well, you know me, I don't wear pink. So my friend Gill got us these little feather boas. It was a great night and I met a lot of great people. After the Pink Party was over, we found the Oktoberfest celebration and joined in the fun there!

New traffic law signs

Drivers in Doha, especially the locals, are very reckless. Qatar has the most traffic fatalities per capita than any other country in the world. It is a huge problem. The Government drafted a new set of traffic laws and along with that a list of violations and penalties. There are signs popping up all over town trying to get people to start driving responsibly. The penalties for not obeying the new laws are pretty steep...such as the one on the above sign! Up to 3 years in jail and 500,000 Riyals (around $140,000) for driving on the wrong side of the road!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

We need a junkyard!

On my way back from taking Adam to school this morning, I passed, as I always do, these two cars. The wrecked car is sitting in a lot near his school. It has been there since early May. The orange car has been moved around to various locations for the past YEAR! Last year, it was sitting at an intersection near our house. Now it sits on the road near our new place. It must be following us!!! There seems to be a problem getting these wrecked or broken down cars moved to a more appropriate location. With so many wrecks happening around town due to wreckless driving, you would think they would have a better plan for these vehicles.

Back to school

After being out sick for 1 week, and then having most of this week off due to Eid Al Fitri, Adam returned to school today. He was very excited about it, so I snapped a photo of him before we left. He is carrying his lunch/snack bag.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

America Bombs Qatar?

Al Jazeera and the Gulf Times (English newspaper in Doha) have all put this headline as their top story today: "American missle hits Qatar". Following is a story about how this missle was "accidentally discharged" and subsequently landed on a remote Qatar farm, and that American officials are not sure what happened. They even managed to get a picture (photo courtesy of Gulf Times). The link for the full story:

Monday, October 15, 2007

Fun at the pool

We went to the pool near our house today, which is a kids pool. The deepest it gets is around my knees. There is a big slide on one end, but Adam has always been too afraid. He went down once with Shane and then once with me, but never by himself. Well, Adam went down the slide by himself for the first time today! He is normally too scared to try it, but after he saw his friend do it, he was ready. Of course I was at the bottom ready to catch him. He went down around 6 or 7 times before he decided he had drank enough pool water!

Making cake

Adam calls playing with playdough "making cake". I can see where that comes from I guess. I finally found some at the store the other day, so now we can play at home. Of course, one of the first things he did was try and eat it!

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Now that Ramadan is over, we don't have to wait for iftar to eat out. We decided to celebrate and go try out one of the new restaurants in our newest mall, Villagio. In celebration of Eid Al Fitri (celebration at the end of Ramadan), they had the Asian Games Olympic torch all lit up. The picture isn't that great, and the reason why I took it you can barely see. The lower blue layer is actually a swimming pool! Now tell me, who in their right mind would go swimming in a torch? Only over here do you see something as over the top as that...

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Adam went over to play with his friend, Ella, and her little brother Alex. I managed to get all 3 of them in a shot before they took off again.

Dog Day Afternoon

The Ray dogs have come back for a visit, and they have already made themselves at home! Adam is absolutely loving it, and Bailey and Buster think it's pretty great to have their friends back.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Controlled substances

Adam has had a really pesky cough the last few days. The only thing that controls the cough is a cough suppressant, such as Robitussin or some equivalent. When we moved here last year, I brought a bottle of this with us. I have since run out of it, so I took the bottle to the chemist (pharmacist in USA) to get some more. Apparently, you need a prescription for cough suppressants here. I find this pretty funny since you can buy most anything over the counter, including Viagra, muscle relaxers, and even most pain relievers. Never usual in Qatar the rules are made to be broken. When I looked at the man in disbelief, he said, "It's have the bottle so I will give it to you".

Just another day in the life of living in Doha!

Ramadan tent

I went to the annual "ladies night out" Ramadan tent with the Pegasus Club. A Ramadan tent to a non-muslim is just a huge buffet served in the ballroom of a hotel. To a muslim, it is a celebration of the breaking of the daily fast. The food is served around 9 pm, and there is live entertainment (such as the Whirling Dervish). I had a great time, and of course ate enough food to last me several days!

Trying something new...

Over the past year, I have used many ways to keep in touch with friends and family. I have wanted to start a blog for a while, but never got around to it. So many friends of mine have blogs and I love them. The hard part will be keeping up with things regularly. Adam and I will definately try!