Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Dukhan 1

Our adventures in Doha have been pretty exciting. Ever since Atticus saw one of his friends using flippers he's wanted to buy some for himself. So with his allowance for last month and for the next three months he got some finally. Sherman got some too and so did Daddy. So we thought it our duty to go somewhere to use them. Where to go? Where to go?

For those of you who aren't familiar with Qatar, it is a small peninsula on the Arabian Gulf about the size of Connecticut. You'd think there would be plenty of places to go snorkeling on a peninsula. Our neighbors had just made a trip to Dukhan and seen quite a bit of sealife. So we embarked on our journey across the country. Fortunately, we live out in the boonies of Doha anyway so we were halfway there. It's true! Looking at the map it shows Doha on one side and Dukhan on the other. It takes just as long to get from the coast of Doha to Education City (where I live) as it takes to get from Education City to Dukhan's coast. There is so much traffic congestion in Doha that it makes me never want to go out. Well, not really. But sometimes. Anyway, the picture below shows you the scenic drive we had while driving west. Going west! Ahh! It felt great to be out in the open. The nice four lane highway, completely empty the whole way there. We saw some wild camels out chomping away at the shrubbery. Then we saw a herd of them running along. It was great. I was just too slow to get a photo. I was too taken in by the beauty of the drive. Ha! I never thought I would consider Nevada's desert beautiful. Well, it is. I'd take Nevada's desert over this one any day. At least you get some color in the sky. On some days it's so dusty you don't even want to breathe. The photo below is of the Emir's palace. This is a photo of it from a distance. I've heard of people trying to get photo's of it up close but were asked to leave by the gaurds. You can't see the palace. It's inside this massive wall surrounding his household. It is literally a walled city with streets inside it. He must have hundreds of servants. Hundreds!

So I have only two photos of our trip to Dukhan. One on the road there, and one on the way back. Sorry people. No good shots. We got there, the sky cleared up. It was sort of blue. We got to the beach and it was empty! Not one person could we find on that beach. It was a bit windy! What's a little wind? Wimps! So we drove out there and followed the instructions of our neighbor on how to get to the part of beach that has the reef. We got our van stuck in the sand. It sucked! Getting your van stuck in the sand at a secluded beach that no one is likely to go to until the next day is a little bit nerve racking. Especially for Jonathan I'm sure. For some strange reason I don't panic when he's around because I notice that he does it for me. I got out of the van and encouraged the kids to also. Why sit inside and worry? We tried to push it. We tried putting stuff under the wheels for them to catch on. We tried going forward, then backward. No luck. Then we prayed. Then this really nice Qatari man and his family drove by and helped us. He and Jonathan managed to get our car out of the sandpit while his cute, half naked little boy galloped in the sand with my boys. A godsend!

Hector was pretty pissed off that he had to stay in the van the whole time. The wind outside was strong but it also started to rain a little. We managed to keep our kids outside playing for a good 45 minutes before it was too painful. Painful because the wind blew up sand, but sand mixed with rain hurts. Small pellets of wet sand pitter pattering all over your skin starts to sting after a while. We didn't even try out the snorkeling gear we bought. The waves were too strong. I know, it sounds unreal. Waves in Qatar. The beaches are unusually calm in Qatar normally. We just picked the wrong day.

So that was the latest adventure of Bunsy and her Tumbleweeds. And to top it off, we saw a real ball of tumbleweed roll across the highway in front of us on our drive home.

P.S. I realize that the revealing nature of these photos may destroy any hope I might have had in getting at least one visitor out to Doha during our life here. Doha does have some beauties and from now on I will try my best to capture them. Hopefully, someone will change their mind and want to visit.

Does anyone know how to get a picture to fit in the frame at the top of my blog?


Aimee said...

Wow. That really is a photo of a whole lotta nothin'. May your next trip be blue skies, calm waters and sand-pelt free.

SKA said...

Hi Bunsy,
RE the blog-header-photo-size question... You should be able to just resize the photo to something smaller, say 900 pixels wide, and it will make it a better size for your blog header.

What photo editing program do you use? If you let me know, I can help you resize it. :) Email me at: kiwi (dot) greebean (at) gmail (dot) com

Sunny said...

What an adventure! You gotta have those kind of trips just so you have interesting stories to tell, right?

Taranani said...

Are you still a super good mom, or are you like me and after 4 kids you turn into a bad mom and you let your baby out of his car seat every now and then when you're driving? I don't do it any more, but when he was tiny and nursing all the time- I didn't want to pull over for a half hour every couple hours on trips so I'd climb in the back with him. With my first three, I'm sure I would have fainted in horror at the thought... Glad you guys are having some awesome adventures~! Our kids are so excited for camping. But beware, I've promised them their fill of junk food, because I never buy it normally. Lately every time they ask for doritos or cheetos or twinkies, instead of just saying, "No, I'm not buying that, it's made of pure sugar and crap." (To which Cori would normally reply, "Sugar is not crap, sugar is vegetables to me.") I now say, I'll buy you crap when we go camping, not before, and not after." So be prepared for a diet of sugar and crap when we go camping. :-)