T’is the season to be roasting..
I figured the summer would be the perfect time to blast out a new bit of Desert Thoughts, since my brain is fried..
The only thing I can wish now is for all of you to be well air conditioned! That’s about the only nice thought I could have!
For those of you who are new to this email, don’t panic.. This is a semi-annual bag of junk that Santaklo (the way they pronounce it here) delivers to your mailboxes in an attempt to bore you infinitely. You will discover that it’s quite efficient in that sense.
As a final note, and for those who care, I will be in Beirut, Lebanon this coming Thursday night, staying for a couple of weeks. I will be reachable at either my Qatar mobile XXXXXXXXXXXX or Lebanon cellular (yep, please don’t call it mobile in Lebanon, it’s not classy) which is XXXXXXXXXXX. Hope to see some of you there (not all, please!). 🙂
OK, let’s jump on the frying pan (literally)..
– You know, I can’t truly describe what the Gulf summer is like. I want to say “unbearable”, but that’s too easy. Let’s just say that you wake up at 7am, wear your swimsuit, leave your house at 8am, and as you walk out of the building, you walk into an oven filled with water. You then hold your breath, and swim in the boiling 10000004 degree water, eyes closed, struggling to find your way to the car. By the time you get to your car, forget the shower you took in the morning. You have to “shovel” the sweat off of your body and the car seat and floor. This is basically the experience of walking for 5 seconds outside.
– I never thought I could “touch” the AIR, or see it. Qatar have devised a new scientific breakthrough, where you actually bump into the air when walking outside. You can see the particles of water floating in front of you, and you have to move them aside to walk.
– Forget Air Conditioning in the car. If you live 5 minutes away from work, don’t bother turning on the AC. In fact, the AC works as a heater for the first 10 minutes in the car, so you’re better off with a water bucket, a shovel and a fan.
– Have you ever seen a cell phone perspire? Only and exclusively in Qatar will you witness such miracle. Just hold any plastic object in AC area, then walk outside with it.. Yes! Your phone itself is sweating!
– People actually kill each other for covered parking spots. I witnessed a 10 minute argument at work, where a guy had parked in someone else’s covered spot. The spot owner said “you think that it’s OK to park your car here and let my car EVAPORATE elsewhere?”.. Those were his real words.
– Most of the time, if you go somewhere and don’t find a covered parking spot, you immediately sacrifice your task and go back home. It’s not worth losing your car’s paint, dashboard, and all belongings for the sake of withdrawing some cash from the ATM machine! You’ll do it at night.
– What the weather reports tell us is always a lie. The trick us! They say the temperature is 50 degrees (celcius, that’s like 120 fahr), but they are referring to the temperature in the SHADE! The temperature in the sun is usually 20 to 1 billion degrees higher.
– Let’s talk about taking showers. Here’s a neat trick that you learn in the Gulf. Since you can’t take a shower because the cold water coming from the tap is boiling hot, you have to invent a way.. Since you have water heaters in the house, turn them OFF! The water in the heater itself gets cold from air conditioning, and hence the HOT water from the tap comes out cold! Hurray! You have reversed the tap! Now you can cool off the cold water from your tap, with the hot water from the heaters!
– Wanna cook a steak? Throw it on your balcony for 3 seconds. It will come out well done and humidly juicy! Yum Yum.. Porch Fried Steak!
– You have your 2 car ACs blasting at the max, you’re still sweating and cursing, and as you drive, you see a bunch of construction workers standing on the street with long sleeve shirts, not a drop of sweat and a smile.. How do they do it? Are they human? I think Extra Terrestrials with temperature control valves have infiltrated this community!
– Did I mention glass perspiration? Yes! Your glass is alive! Your windows sweat! If your AC is on inside, you can actually see the window getting damper and damper until drops of water cover it completely from the outside! Natural cleansing, what a treat!
– I wonder why people buy bottled water here, when they can simply take a bucket outside and fill it with some “air”! There is so much humidity in the air that you can save money on aquariums by putting your fish on the table instead! It will live happily!
– Ever stayed home on a work day because you’re afraid to disintegrate if you walk to your car? How about “let’s not go to the beach today, it’s too hot”.. Makes sense, right?
– You like being tanned? How about being toast? 😉
Enjoy! And take care of yourselves.. Please stay in touch!
Firo the Desert Dueler