Friday, August 31, 2012

Doha Zoo is Closed for maintenance

Doha Zoo is Closed for maintenance - I learnt about it only during Eid holidays .It is going to be transformed into a world -class facility with much bigger spaces for the animals . I liked the retro feel at the Doha Zoo .The fountains , the old big trees , the zebras and some other animals who really had nice big yard there . But it is true that some animals were kept in a sad ,small cage and seeing them depressed there was not a much uplifting experience .

Monday, August 27, 2012

Modern art inspired by Arabic calligraphy

Modern art by Moza Al-Kuwairi .Untitled acrylic on canvas . Calligraphic inspiration .
Exhibited at Katara .


Abstract art by Hessa Kalla . Mixed media on canvas .

Colorful and dynamic abstract painting by Mubarrak Al-malik . Title : Calligraphy 2
Acrylic on canvas

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Modern Art Exhibitions at the Katara 2012 August


Daniel Weil modern art clocks were /are exhibited at the Katara Cultural Village .


The Sun is the celestial time settler Inspired by Cezanne .... Contemplating Cezanne's the Card Players painting , the configuration for this clock emerged ..


The clock is built of five separate elements . This does not explain time , but in a way it simply exposes its mysterious essence .

Friday, August 24, 2012

Should we blame a building ?

Should we blame a building for a terrible tragedy ? Is the building of the Villaggio Mall which should be punished  and destroyed or the mentality that lead to the tragedy ? People who do not care /managers who do not practice fire drills ,who  do not contact the firefighters and inform them about the existence of a nursery ,authorities giving permission to the minister's daughter to run a nursery in a backroom without emergency exit ...teachers who do not rush out of the place with kids when they smell the smoke first but  they call here and there to get orders because they  got used to obeying and not used to take  their own decisions ... will the new  fire protecting instruments be really working when employees are so  uncertain about   their duties in case of an unexpected situation ? Just a little example . Some days ago  my child was waiting for a game 20 minutes in an overcrowded amusement park .That went out of order and she got stuck in the middle of the line not being able to come out .The staff did not know what to do . The crowd was bigger and bigger and it took the staff 10 minutes or more to decide that the game was not working and instruct the kids to turn back and walk out without pushing each other . Ten minutes or more  so many kids who wanted to leave got stuck among the bars and other kids ...awful experience ...and it could have been avoided with telling two words ..." Sorry -it is out of order -turn back kids and walk back " 
We can not avoid another tragedy until "the cheaper the better" policy is the main trend when hiring work force here and not the competence is the important .

Messaid Beach at Eid and after

The weather is hot but bearable -we arrived a bit late in the morning of the first day of the Eid . Crystal clear water .Some medusa in it ..Cleaners at the beach ...working continuously .Only some cans ..neat look ...wonderful time with the kids ....Five days after Eid ... we arrived earlier than before but the weather is already too hot ... the car sank in the sand ...bibsi cans, gulfa bottles ,marlboro boxes ,slippers ,t--shirts ,plastic bags, a sofa cushion in the water ,we can't believe that it is the same beach ...who left that tons of garbage there ? ... where are the cleaners ? ...why the para glider is flying over our head -just missed our sank car ...why the four wheelers are venturing up the dunes which are apparently too steep ... why the shore is full of medusas and other dead sea creatures ...let's go home /sweet air-conditioned home ...this Friday morning was the most unpleasant beach experience here ...we should forget about beaches for some weeks ...until the weather gets milder and the beach will clear up ...will it be cleaned before next Eid again?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Tricky Seafood restaurants in Qatar

Some of the seafood restaurants were selling cheap Vietnamese fish from the mekong delta( yuk!) as local hamour fillet .They closed temporarily these ones :

Favorite Fish Restaurant (New Mirqab)
Quick Fishes Restaurant (Airport Area)
Estacosa Restaurant (Bin Mahmoud)
Little Sailor Restaurant for Sea Food (North Muaither)
Golden Fish Restaurant (Al Sadd)
Al Adid Restaurant for Fish and Grill (North Muaither)
Arab Bukhari Restaurant (Al Khor)
Al Karwan Restaurant (Al Markhiya)

I have never tried any of them .Have you ?

Friday, August 17, 2012

iftar buffet at the Al- Khaima restaurant or Fight For Your Food

It was some years ago that my husband had a company iftar dinner there . He had liked the place and decided to take us out the other day .
We had reservation and clearly stated that we were coming with small kids . We were happy to see that they have a big hall just for families . But when we entered we were less happy to see that it was way too much crowded . In fact one of our kids had to use the toilet and it was so painful until we got to the place - there was not much room for left for the aisle and we had to disturb people while they were having dinner .
I saw a lots of Arab expat families but no one local .
The second shock came when I noticed that they were smoking at the next table . When my husband went to the staff to complain he got the information that it is allowed to smoke at the family section. Family section -can you believe that ? It has a smoking area !
We had no chance to get another table .Do we have any excuse for not leaving at once ? Only that we were hungry at the end of the fasting day .Otherwise we would have left .

The third shock .
My parents always told me to avoid big crowds/pushing each other -it is simply not our style . So somehow even after living here for so many years it is deep in my soul -I rather wait .Ten minutes after that the voice of the muesin gave sign for iftar time - there were barely any food left on the buffet table .
So if you happen to go there for buffet dinner you have to stand and wait and push and take as much food as possible on your plate ... literally you are supposed to fight for your meal .

Finally I had some salad which is a healthy dinner but asking 70 riyal for that is a daytime robbery .I booked for an open buffet dinner which included there grilled fish/grilled chicken cubes /grilled lamb - but I did not get any .
I did not ask for nicotine and our clothes are still smelling the smoke .

This restaurant is for you of you got used to this type of fighting for your food dinner.
I have been to many restaurants with buffet dinner but I have never seen this unfair practice that I witnessed here . I think they should refill their buffet table if it runs out of food within ten minutes ...
For us "never again "

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Vintage Swirls - Eid Mubarrak Business Card

Vintage swirls with glowing letters against dark background.Text in Arabic with transliteration .Eid Mubarak means Pleasant Holiday !Stylish business card to give to your Muslim customers/ friends and co-workers/business partners at the end of the fasting month .Design by Alma Wad .Easy to customize it with the details of your company .

This thick 100lb card stock has a pretty iridescent pearl finish.

Chubby size , 3.5" x 2.5", 100 /pack

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Secret of the Hungarian success at the Olympic Games

I set up a page to tell the world about the success of my country's sport men and women .Then I check my statistics and I see that  so many visitors of my page want to know the secret of the Hungarians .
Well  , you might have heard that Hungary with a population of 10 .million got 17 medals at the Games .8 of them were GOLD !
This way our rank at the medal per capita list is : the fifth     - number five of all the countries in the world -if we compare the number of gold medals to the population .

I do not think that there is a special secret of that , Hungary is not a bunch of stupid /low performing people -as  a lots of media report suggests . I know also that there is a vast anti-Hungarian propaganda world-wide  showing only the negative aspects of the Magyars life .At the Games where the numbers talk for themselves  the success  can not be ignored .

hungary necklace
hungary necklace by almawad
Design your own photo necklace online at Zazzle.

Once when I was working as a tour-guide an American tourist asked me " Can you read and write ?"
and without waiting for the answer " your country will be better off if the next generation will go to school" Well ,you really need to keep cool when doing this job .

I tried to be polite when answering " yes, I know  how to read and write  and even my great -great grandmothers knew it . Hungary's  law on public education dates back to the 19th century . One of my grandma was a teacher with college degree .My other grandma had made four grades at the elementary school -as that was the minimum  required compulsory   level for every child in the 1920s .

Our first gold medals are coming from the 19th century Athene Games .Doing sport /competitions have more than 100 year old tradition .My little hometown has an Olympic champion .Some of my friends were working hard to be able to go to the Olympics . Though they did not manage to do so they keep organizing events for other ladies /housewives and for kids .The tradition of doing sport is kept this way .
The other thing is the policy of the country . When I was at the secondary  at the PE lessons twice a year we had to perform various activities .We had to  high -jump ,long jump ,sprint , running 600 meters . Teachers had to send the records to a center where they could  find easily the talented ones .

Most towns have sport clubs .Our town  had  football /chess /karate /athletic /wrestling/kayak/canoe /swimming/shooting/gliding clubs . The trainings were free or nearly free .For the poor kids sport can be often a way to break out from the poverty( yes , we have gypsies performing wonderfully)  -and for the wealthy this my be a question of prestige .

So  there are many factors .After all I do not think that any of these things are so special  - we love our country  -as other people love their own .Money has little if any importance at this .What do you think ?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Total Medals per capita -Qatar number 20

Qatar with its two bronze became the  20th in the list of countries where the medals are compared to the population .
Well  done -it is a great rank ! Mabruk Qatar !

photo source

Saturday, August 11, 2012

city by night - business card template

Beautiful painting with an illuminated city by nigh .Original art by Alma Wad featuring the skyline of Doha , Qatar . Easy to customize this business card with your own details .It comes 100 /pack .

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Remote Control Cockroach Roach bug

I love the self-irony of the Japanese . It seems that they have a cockroach problem in their country especially in the countryside ... Now instead of denial they made a robotic version of their pest and sell it and they play with it ... this is how they advertise it ..."They say that everything's small in Japan. Well, everything except the roaches, known in Japan as gokiburi. Yep, come summer the country is literally crawling with them and they are big, black and mean critters. So, what better creature to turn into a remote control toy, you might ask! Well, that's what JTT has done!"

It was ten years ago that I saw the first cockroach in my life . I know that they are spread all over the wordl but somehow I  had been lucky enough not to meet any before ... I heard the there are some in the city  of  Budapest but even there I did not see any ..   I guess that in the eighties  when I was living there the pest control was highly organized .Then we moved to Qatar . The first thing that I saw  in the middle of the room was this insect -it was dead . With  my child we believed that it is a cricket  and we felt sorry for it ....then we learned that we have to fight them ...  you can find a lots of sound advice here about this fight . When I go home to Hungary my mom wonders why I  follow her to the kitchen and cover every dish so nervously ....

Closed facilities during Ramadan

GRHHH  I can not tell how angry I am ! It is Ramadan and fasting month . Everything is open at different  hours .We got used to that . So  the club where we usually go announced its Ramadan timing ,. It was fine we could go after iftar and  swim with the kids one hour or so . Every year  it is like that .The second week of Ramadan we found a notice "swimming pool is closed for a week for maintenance " ... OK one week is OK - no swimming for a week kids . Or we could go to the Aquapark they have got fun timing from  8pm-to2 am and big discount ... then I realize that aquapark  cancelled its ladies only days during Ramadan - it is logic not ?   - this is a holy month you should swim mixed ... and based on their survey they won't even make a ladies only day for Eid .
OK one week has gone and we return to our club just to be informed that the swimming pool will be closed for all Ramadan " for maintenance " and as for Eid   they do not usually open during those festive days ...
It is Ramadan . I have to work . I have to keep my  kids entertained here . My husband has to work . The great Ramadan timing for them is that they have to work only eight hours a day opposed to the twelve /so why other facilities management think that it is Ok to disregard the needs of their customers ?

Sunday, August 05, 2012

white spotted antelopes at doha zoo

spotted antelopes in the zoo stretched canvas prints
spotted antelopes in the zoo stretched canvas prints by almawad
Get your own canvas transfer prints

White spotted antelopes in the zoo of Doha , Qatar . They came quite close to me when I was watching them from an elevated area . Great for animal lovers /Africa fans . Original photo by Alma Wad .

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Iftar Dinner with set menus - affordable places

There is life in Qatar even beyond the five star hotels .The proof of that is that some places offer iftar dinner with set menus  and they wont cost you so much .So leave the posh places for the millionaires and for the corporate show-off  and find a place where they are ready to offer a set menu  for ordinary people  when the sun sets .

Royal Tandoor   -  set menu  QR 50   between 5 -8 PM
 reservation : 4444 6151

Applebee's Iftar Buffet - unlimited soups , salads , appetizers with selected main course QR 55

Sukh Sagar , Pure vegetarian restaurant  - Weekend Dinner Buffet  QR 35    Tel : 44319172

Merweb Hotel  -Al  Sadd Doha
Tiffany's restaurant   Iftar Buffet QR 65 Lebanese  dishes
 reservation :4447 1017

Shawarma Grill House(Woqod Station, Al Rayan,) - Ramadan Special all you can eat QR59 including drinks  - children  eat at half price
reservation 4411 9920

in case you got   a  large family and you are minimum 30 people when you dine out then you may also consider Bombay Chowpatty

 for QR 39 you can get traditional Indian  iftar meal 
Tel :55712757

finally if you are a pizza fan then you may have a less traditional iftar meal at Papa Johns where you can have  pizzas ,  cheesesticks , breadsticks , potato wedges ,pepsi -all you can eat style ... for QR19

update : I found a restaurant offering dinner for much more expensive than they advertised ... also I found that all places are very busy with customers so it is better to call them in advance and book a table /ask about the price 

For those who are longing for the Hungarian trapista cheese

Hungary's most popular cheese the Trapista is not imported to Qatar .Those who miss it try the  Hajdu kashkawali cheese but it is something different ,. I  admit that I am one of those who wish to have some real Hungarian trapista . Then  I started to read about this cheese . It turned out that it was brought to Hungary centuries ago by French monks and it is very much similar to the French Port Salut cheese .
So I rushed to the Megamart to see if they have any and behold  - for 116 QR/kg I got a piece only to say that it was really  like our much beloved trapista and  it disappeared from our fridge very quickly .
So I am sharing this with you -  you might try it and like it .

Qatari Bronze in London

Congrats Qatar !

Shooter and rally driver Nasser Al Attiyah  won the bronze for Qatar .  It is a great thing ! Go Qatar Go !  He became the third in skeet shooting .In fact this was the first medal for Arabs at this Games . What more curious is that he is a rally  driver first of all . His great love  the rally   left him  no much time to practice shooting during  the year . Only ten days of practice and he became the third .

expat Qatar