Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Sabille Shop

I love sabilles. Sabilles are localized charity, “in a dry and thirsty land” they are provided by generous souls that the thirsty might have cool, fresh water to refresh thenselves in the heat of the day. You will see them at mosques, along city streets, in every neighboorhood. They come in fanciful shapes; if you type “sabille” into the HT&E search window, you will see more. I love the Kuwait Liberation Tower ones, and also the water-tower wannabes, but I also like the ones that look like old castles or old doors or jugs. I love it that people go to the trouble to make something utilitarian interesting, even artistic.

Recently, I found a shop in the Wafa Mall that sells sabilles:


The shop is called Fine Things, and also has some fancy presentation boxes and this, which looks like a mail box to me, but might be for collecting charitable donations, or . . . ? I might be totally wrong. Your guess is as good as mine:


I like this tiny little mall because it has commercial kitchen supply shops with all kinds of display cases and things you don’t find very often. There is also a mattress shop; I always laugh when there is a family shopping there for mattresses because the parents don’t say “NO!” to their kids, so the kids are JUMPING ON THE MATTRESSES! The salesmen seem unable to ask the parents to make them stop.

March 3, 2008 - Posted by | Arts & Handicrafts, Cold Drinks, Community, Cooking, Cultural, Customer Service, Entertainment, Exercise, Family Issues, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Shopping


  1. whats that?

    Comment by Skinnybumblebee | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  2. Lool never mind… i thought that was an english word…
    I read it 10 times!

    Comment by Skinnybumblebee | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  3. LLOOOLLL, Skinny B, did I spell it wrong?

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  4. I didn’t know they were named like that and neither did I know that they all come from a charity.
    Thanks for the Info!

    Comment by Nicole | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  5. Is that mall in Farwaniya behind showtime??

    Comment by Chirp | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  6. I’ve never heard about it before

    Comment by Big Pearls | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  7. These are nice looking but this kind of reminds me of how they have charity fund raisers sometimes where they serve lavish food and spend a fortune just on the settings. It’s ironic because all that money could be added to the charity. But I guess they need all the fancy shmancy stuff sometimes to attract the big donors.

    Comment by 7zaya | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  8. I like the first one, its pretty to keep outside the house!

    Comment by zainoba | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  9. It might be sort of Farwaniya – it is on the south side of 6th ring, where Sears is and the Farwaniya traffic department. Is that the area you were describing, Chirp?

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  10. Nicole, I know, isn’t it a cool way to be charitable?

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  11. 7zaya – as a person who used to be a fund-raiser, I can tell you that most of the biggest donors are usually the least pretentious and least interested in the big to-do. A sabille would be right up their alley. It’s the people with new money who want a big splash.

    As for the charity events, you usually do them with a sponsor – like the hotel or fancy restaurant is also one of the sponsors, so you get the fancy meal at greatly reduced prices. Other sponsors contribute the floral centerpieces, entertainment, decorations, etc . . . you even get the publicity donated. Expenses – if you are smart – are kept very low, so that the money can go to the charity. I worked for public education (oops, the secret is out) and people were amazingly generous. Even my salary was covered by a corporate donation.

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  12. Big Pearls – no kidding? You see them all over, what do YOU call them?

    Zainoba – Every now and then I see one I really like – I try to keep my camera handy!

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  13. Did you know that if you put a sabeel water chiller outside your villa, the goverment will not charge you for the water used there ?

    Comment by Don Veto | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  14. No, I didn’t know that. I think the whole idea is so humane.

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  15. Yes yes it is!! its a new mall right? My manager, my co worker and I used to go there to get away from work for a bit, when i used to work around that area.

    Comment by Chirp | March 3, 2008 | Reply

  16. I am totally amazed! It is such an obscure mall! I like it because they have a Seattle’s Best there, and you can find parking. Other than that, it doesn’t have much. But how totally funny that out of all the malls in Kuwait, you would know that one! 🙂

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 4, 2008 | Reply

  17. […] as the Sabille is placed on the street to provide water for the thirsty, the local mosques usually have a place to wash before prayers.This washing is required and is […]

    Pingback by Old Mosque Near Mubarakiyya « Here There and Everywhere | March 8, 2008 | Reply

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