Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Old Mosque Near Mubarakiyya

I really wanted to include this photo just to show you how very blue the sky was yesterday. The white of this mosque’s minaret provides contrast:

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Just 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 called Wudu. Some places are very utilitarian, but the mosque above, and the nearby women’s mosque, have a beautiful place for washing:

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The tile pattern is intricate:
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March 8, 2008 Posted by | Arts & Handicrafts, Community, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Social Issues, Weather | 18 Comments

Cell Phone or Drunk?

From AOL News:

Using Cell Phone While Driving Akin to Driving Drunk, Say Researchers
Posted Mar 7th 2008 11:24AM by Evan Shamoon

According to a new study, talking on your cell phone while driving could be as dangerous as being under the influence of alcohol. Carnegie-Mellon University researchers used brain imaging to show how mobile phone use alone reduces 37 percent of brain activity engaged in driving. The findings were published in the latest gotta-have-it issue of the journal ‘Brain Research,’ and also suggest that using a hands-free headset doesn’t make much of a difference.

Basically, the study found that drivers who spoke on their phones while driving tended to make many of the same driving mistakes as those who just got finished speaking to the bottle.

So to speak.

Comment: I always thought using a headset solved the problem – guess I was wrong. 😦 The Kuwait Ministry of Traffic is currently considering a law against using cell phones while driving in Kuwait. If enforced, it’s going to make a big difference in the lives of a lot of people in Kuwait. I wonder if it will mean fewer pedestrians killed?

March 8, 2008 Posted by | Bureaucracy, Communication, Crime, ExPat Life, Health Issues, Kuwait, Living Conditions, News, Social Issues, Statistics | 8 Comments

Twilight 7 Mar 2008

Last night had to be one of the most beautiful nights I have seen in Kuwait. The weather was perfect. The haze lifted – have you noticed that Fridays are often the least hazy day of the week?

Is it less automobile traffic? Is it some factory not active on Fridays which pours out pollutants during the week? For some reason, if there is a really clear day in Kuwait – and that is a big “if” – it will be a Friday.

People were eating outside everywhere it was possible. The weather was warm, without being hot. It had a different feel to it; it felt like living in a more European country. Last night, when it got dark, you could even see stars in the sky – 90% of the nights in Kuwait, it is too hazy to see all but one or two of the very brightest stars with the naked eye.

Here is what it looked like at twilight:

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Yes, there is still that worrisome band of thick hazy something on the horizon, but at twilight, it goes that lovely purple grey color, surrounded by bands of pink in the water and the sky as the sun is setting. A total WOW.

March 8, 2008 Posted by | Community, Cultural, Eating Out, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Weather | 4 Comments