July 14, 2007

Fabulous Fujairah!

On my last trip to The UAE I visited Fujairah and did two amazing dives at Dibba Rock. Clownfish, barracudas and turtles galore! Not to mention beautiful coral reefs, in contrast to Dubai's "dead sea" due to all the construction work.

Fujairah is growing! it said on posters next to the road. Sweden's Fritidsresor now flies its holidaymakers to Fujairah and when I visited Fujairah's Tourism site I was pleasently surprised by fabulous music. Have a listen. One can only hope that Fujairah's waters are spared from excessive construction work.

July 09, 2007

The New 7 wonders

I did a post on the naming of 7 new wonders of the world in January of last year. This year on July 7th 2007 (777 oohh!) 7 new wonders were named. Among them Petra in Jordan, The great Wall of China, Taj Mahal in India, Machu Pichu in Peru and the Collosseum in Rome.

In my previous post I wrote down the seven wonders of my world, asking you to come up with the seventh wonder. Here is a recap of them, and the invitation still stands so start your mind machines and get creative!

The seven wonders of my world:

1. The rickshaws in Pakistan: tiny, three wheeled yet carries up to a total of 4 grown ups, still maintains a high speed and manages to re-arrange your entire organ content, ending up with your heart literally in your throat, for a mere price of 15 rupees.

2. The taxi cars of Cairo: some have doors, some don't. Some have windows, some don't. And should they have windows, they don't have the device needed to wind it down. But they all come equipped with your own state of the art driver who manages to make even atheists call to God for help once in their life.

3. The donkeys of Petra: I lay my life in their hands and surprisingly I survived. Taking a ride on a donkey up a steep, narrow mountain is something of a death wish, but these donkeys knew exactly where to go without needing their master show them. Props to the donkeys! Which is more than I can say for Jordanian cab drivers...

4. PIA (Pakistan International Airlines): or Perhaps I'll Arrive... I once took a flight from Lahore to Islamabad that later was bound for London but after landing in Islamabad, picking up a few passangers, it went back to Lahore again. Why? They said they had to fill the tank...need I say more?

5. The Pakistani People: Whenever the son or daughter gets married and it's time to "move out", they always amazingly enough manage to find the only available apartment or house in that city at that time, directly placed in front of their own. Sometimes it's so close that you can actually look into each others living rooms and wave!

6. Microsoft Word: Can you believe that the word "Kaaba" (I also tried Kaba) doesn't exist in its "dictionary". The most famous and holy building for Muslims. Instead I got the suggestion of "Kaibab" and "Kabala". However when I try writing the Jewish words "Kibbutz" and "Bar Mitzvah", there is no problem whatsoever. I am happy for the Jews, don't get me wrong. It's great to be represented with words that are of significance to your faith or culture. Still, it sure makes you wonder. Microsoft... Get a grip.

As for the seventh wonder, I invite my readers to come up with suggestions... now be fair...

*Weird* Tag

When you blog, no matter how serious or non personal your blog is, you must be prepared for the occasional tag to break the pattern and lighten things up so Um Ibrahim, thank you for this one.

6 weird things about me:

1. I have three passports, two nationalities, one of them a country I have never set my foot in and have no "ethnic" ties to.

2. I love old books and visit every sunday market both here and abroad with a mission to "rescue" all old books, and take them with me to my growing library.

3. After a few days in a country I usually start understanding and speaking the language there. It quite freaks me and the people around me out. Last time was in Bosnia.

4. Before I drink water from a tap I have to fill the glass and pour it over the tap imagining that the tap is clean now so the water too is clean...compulsive behavior?

5. I love eating cold pasta with ketchup...

6. My sister and I have had our own secret language between us (that changes all the time with new words) since childhood that has rubbed off to our friends and family, so now everyone is talking "weird" around here.