Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A most generous gift from HH Sheikh Salem Al Ali

 A wealthy senior member of Kuwait’s ruling family yesterday announced a donation of 60 million dinars ($215 million) to help those in debt, those getting married and the learned elite. Chief of the National Guard Sheikh Salem Al-Ali Al-Sabah, in his 80s, said in a statement that the donation would go towards helping those in debt, men who plan to get married and those who complete their doctorates. Any Kuwaiti man who marries a female citizen will receive $21,400 (6,000 KD) while those in debt are entitled to $14,300 (4,000 KD) each, said a statement posted on his Twitter account. A Kuwaiti who completes his doctorate degree gets around $71,500 (20,000 KD), the statement said. Expatriates living in the oil-rich emirate are not included.

Sheikh Salem has restored my faith in men with his generous donation helping the citizens of Kuwait.What a great man as he has also given over 100 million KD to Zakat house. I have already read several comments stating citizens are just getting richer with these payouts and it bugs me.

 (As long as thieves don't get their hands on the money and "wasta" is not involved in choosing which citizen receives the benefits it will work out great. It would be great to see other rich people donate to this fund and keep it going for those in need. NOTE: NOT ALL KUWAITI CITIZENS ARE RICH AND HAVE OIL WELLS IN THEIR BACKYARDS! Every time I tell someone my husband is Kuwaiti their reply is always the same "you're married to a Kuwaiti and they are all rich" um no not all of them. Some bloggers talk about all of their LV bags and Chanel items which makes people on the outside think that everyone is rich, I, on the other hand write about reality in Kuwait faced by the normal people working and surviving in Kuwait.

Due to bad decisions made in life by some citizens most are so far in debt their great-grandkids wouldn't even be able to pay off their loans. Most Kuwaitis make 450-700 KD at the most. They get 50 KD per child which doesn't cover much. They get free medical which consists of going to government hospitals and we all know what kind of service people get there so most end up going to private hospitals and paying out of pocket. Education is free which consists of government schools run by mostly Egyptian teachers and don't offer the same programs as private schools so a lot of Kuwaiti kids go to private schools and parents pay out of pocket. They do get scholarships for college and those with wasta can study abroad which is good but not all finish high school which puts them in the 450-700 KD range for those who haven't finished college.

They are given a piece of land where ever the government chooses and 70,000 KD for a house after 10 years of marriage or so and they do have to pay that back of course. In reality no one can build any kind of decent house for 70,000 KD so again they take out loans to cover the additional costs of building a house. So if one receives 450-700 KD about 70% of that goes to pay their various loans. They get food each month but have to pay about 60 KD for the items. Those fancy cars on the streets are probably rented or borrowed from a rich friend to impress people.)

Citizens marrying Kuwaiti women already get 6,000 KD for marriage and now they will get an additional 6,000 KD on top of that, there's going to be a lot of marriages  made and once they receive the money they divorce splitting the money between the two of them or the guy gets a divorce taking it all considering all of the money goes to their account.

Only time will tell...

Monday, July 30, 2012

The Kuwait zoo is looking for a few good Kuwaiti security Guards

Decrease in numbers of people visiting the zoo

KUWAIT: The Kuwait Zoo is still operating during the holy month of Ramadan from 1:30 pm – 5:30 pm every day, with Sunday being a holiday. According to a member of the management, the zoo closes at sunset so the animals will rest, and this is an international practice or tradition.
The entrance fee is 500 Fils and there are two parts to the zoo. Visitors may choose to only view the garden and not the zoo by purchasing a ticket for 250 Fils.  The garden is open till 8 pm daily.
Though the weather has been hot, there are visitors coming to the zoo. The employee noted that primarily people arrive after 3pm, though there are rarely 100 visitors per day. Thus, during the weekends (on Fridays and Saturdays) about 200 visitors come. The number of visitors are now fewer because there are no school trips and people are fasting. Also, the hot weather is affecting the number.
Currently, there are no facilities offering food or beverages inside the zoo. The employee stressed that the cafeteria, baqala, and the juice shop will be ready for Eid Alfiret. Although the majority of visitors are usually expats, during Ramadan most visitors, if not all, are Kuwaitis.
The zoo has some problems during the year. According to the employee, the greatest problem is caused by uncivilized visitors teasing animals. They throw stones or other objects and hurt the animals. Also, some animals become scared from this throwing and hurt themselves.
There are security guards inside the zoo, though there are not enough, and visitors do not always respect them since they are Arab Nationals. The employee said that during each shift there are 12 security guards, which are not enough to cover the entire zoo. The management has sought to hire Kuwaiti guards, though none applied.
Animals lovers have the chance to acquire some zoo animals. In October, an auction will be held to sell some animals that have become over-abundant. The employee stated that there are about 60 to 70 deer in the zoo and there is not enough space to house all of them. Perhaps officials can exchange them for other animals.
By Nawara Fattahova

Hmmm, I wonder why no Kuwaiti applied for security guard positions? They should try hiring bedoons as foreigners can't tell the difference between bedoon and Kuwaiti.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Al Ghaith House

If you are one of my avid readers you would know I love all things historical in Kuwait and would love to be in a position to save the last remaining structures for the future generations although that's probably next to impossible. After doing some searches on the internet I came across the Al Ghaith house and of course I had to find this place. I finally found it after going back and forth a few times. I wanted to visit the gallery next to it but I was too early, after Ramadan, Inshallah. I saw a picture of on the internet at dusk and it looked a lot better, I wasn't expecting the windows to be filled in with cement but I guess that's part of the restoration.

I can only imagine what the area used to look like when this house was built. The sounds of children playing around and merchants selling their goods, what a simple time it was. There is a gallery and a museum right next to it that you can also visit.

Bait Ghaith bin Abdullah bin Yousef house was built in the 1930s. It is located in Sharq, near what is today the Museum of Modern Art and was formerly Al Sharqiyah School for Girls.

Bait Ghaith is a fine example of an old Kuwaiti house and one which represents social, economic and cultural features of Kuwaiti society of the past. The house features an intertwined architectural layout typical of the original urban structures in old Kuwait City, particularly in terms of its empty space, its multifunctional features, and the way it was built.

The house is located on a 280 square meter plot of land and was originally adjacent to several stores and a number of houses including the Rashed Al Omer, Humoud Al Mutawa and Abdullah al Madhi houses. The house of the late Ghaith bin Abdullah bin Yousef comprised a backyard, two rooms, a store, a bathroom, a kitchen and an upper room for his privacy. The house also contained a cistern to store water.

Ghaith bin Abdullah bin Yousef was a merchant who used to buy goods and merchandise such as fruit and crates at the port and ship them to various countries by sea.

Today the house maintains its characteristic architectural features, such as its wooden ceiling, the beams, and some of the wooden doors. In addition, the rooms still present the original construction of walls made of sea rock. The National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters refurbished and now maintains the building as an example of old Kuwaiti architecture.

Source: Kuwait - History, Heritage, Architecture: published by the National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters. Written by Abdullah Al Beeshi, assisted by Maha Khaled Al Quoud.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Security guard protecting Kuwaiti house

This was the first time I've seen a house that had security guards besides some of the Sheikhs houses. This house is located in Abu Halaifa behind the Applebee's restaurant area. The hosue in not very impressive but it does have its own private security. It takes up half of the open beach that the public used for swimming but if you have the right amount of money you can have anything. New roads have been built leading up to the house which is a plus for the area. I just don't understand why someone would need a guard to protect it unless it's one of thoses houses being built for the rich people that they never use.

The area behind the restaurants has a few uninhabited houses which I think is a complete waste. This one below has been left behind with only a haris there to keep it going. It could be turned into a nice place to rent out. But the rich have so much money and so many houses they can't keep track of them and they let them go to waste. It's called being greedy.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

AWARE Center- Lecture "The meaning of Ramadan"

RAMADAN LECTURE = IFTAR: "The Meaning of Ramadan" 30 Jul 2012, 6:00 pm

Monday. July 30, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. Ramadan presents a wonderful opportunity for Westerners to learn more about Kuwait, to meet new individuals & have questions regarding Islam & the Holy month of Ramadan answered. During this special month, the communal meal referred to as Iftar, breaks the fast at the end of the day & brings family & friends together. As part of AWARE's Ramadan activities, we invite you to join us for a Ramadan presentation followed by a traditional “Iftar dinner,” at the AWARE Center. Limited Seats Advance registration required for this event at joumana@aware.com.kw

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Fake toys from China

It's so hard trying to find decent affordable toys in Kuwait. 99% of the toys are fakes from China and are expensive considering the quality. There are a few Little Tykes toys from the states but cost twice as much as fake toys. Of course there is Toys R Us but their toys are outrageous compared to the cost in the states plus the staff are rude. If I shop for toys I go to Centerpointe which is where I took these pictures. I just hope they last more than an hour after being opened.

I usually order things from WalMart but needed something quick this time.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Drinking /Eating etc during Ramadan will land you in JAIL

 Asian arrested for drinking in public during fasting hours

Kuwait: The first day of Ramadan also witnessed the first case of drinking in public during the day time, said security sources. Case papers indicate that a police patrol saw an Asian drinking water from a bottle during the day. On asking him why he was not fasting, he said that his sect had not yet started fasting, an excuse which police had not accepted and the man was arrested. Notably, according to Kuwaiti laws, anybody caught drinking or eating in public during fasting hours is detained until after the Eid.

American girl drowns- Kuwait Times

 Girl drowned

The body of a 7 year-old American girl was sent to the medical examiner after drowning in the sea at Abu Halifa, said security sources. The sources added that the girl was swimming in Abu Halifa when a strong current pulled her further out to sea. Her family attempted to rescue her, but failed.

AWARE Center event- The meaning of Ramadan


"The Meaning of Ramadan" 26 Jul 2012, 6:00 pm

Thursday, July 26, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. Ramadan presents a wonderful opportunity for Westerners to learn more about Kuwait, to meet new individuals & have questions regarding Islam & the Holy month of Ramadan answered. During this special month, the communal meal referred to as Iftar, breaks the fast at the end of the day & brings family & friends together. As part of AWARE's Ramadan activities, we invite you to join us for a Ramadan presentation followed by a traditional “Iftar dinner,” at the AWARE Center. Limited Seats Advance registration required for this event at joumana@aware.com.kw

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Crashed Cars of Kuwait

Another crashed car in Kuwait which is an everyday occurance.

Didn't see any blood, maybe they survived.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Instant cloth- just add Water!

While looking around in Lulu Hypermarket I saw this little package in the toilet paper aisle. I was curious as to whether or not it worked and it was only 190 fils so I picked one up. I got home and had to try it out as I always need toilet paper or something to clean my hands when going out and about in Kuwait. Toilet paper seems to be a luxury item everywhere you go here.


                                                      What it looks like
                                           Add water, then it puffs up
                                                                    Unroll it
                                                       Instant wet cloth

Pretty cool for 190 fils.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Qatar even has Janet Jackson

Qatari businessman Wissam Al Mana has been dating Janet Jackson since July 2010. Is there anything they don't lay claim to?

Besides the children of Qatari citizens that are left behind, those stories are not news worthy I guess.

Would it be "It's Janet, Mrs. Al Mana if you're nasty"?

Mini ice skating rink for kids- Al Bairaq mall in Egaila

There's a cute little mini ice skating rink for young kids in Al Bairaq mall upstairs near the movie theater. 

The kids were loving it.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

'Like' group's puppycam campaign, help a disabled vet get a therapy Dog

'Like' group's puppycam campaign, help a disabled vet get a therapy dog (link)

There's no shortage of puppycams on the Internet these days. Thousands of people spend hours watching Shiba Inus romp around and then fall asleep.

This is perhaps why a few groups are teaming up to try to turn the guilty pleasure of watching pups all day into a way to help disabled veterans.

Explore.org, in conjunction with DogBlessYou.org, has put up its own puppycam and says that for every 1,000 likes of the DogBlessYou Facebook, Pinterest and/or Tumblr pages, the group will donate a therapy dog to a disabled war veteran.(facebook link)

"The mission of explore.org is to champion the selfless acts of others, to create a portal into the soul of humanity and to inspire life long learning. What is the easiest way to do this? Through dogs – they see our souls like no other," founder Charlie Annenberg says on the the DogBlessYou Facebook page. "That is why as we build Dog Bless You, I believe that its mission should be to champion the selfless acts of animals."

All we have to do is hit the "like" button on their facebook profile!!!

Ramadan starts July 21

 Ramadan starts July 21

KUWAIT CITY, July 16: Undersecretary of the Religious Terms of Reference Mohammed Baqer Al-Mehri has announced the first day of Ramadan in Kuwait will be Saturday, corresponding to July 21, 2012, reports Al-Nahar daily.

In a statement, Al-Mehri said the committee agrees with Sunni clerics who declared that this Ramadan will begin on Saturday, refuting Kuwaiti Astronomer Dr Saleh Al-Ojairi who predicted the first day of Ramadan would be Friday corresponding to July 20.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Appeals acquits teen in liquor, drugs charges- As usual, no one ever serves time for Crime

KUWAIT CITY, July 15: The Court of Appeals, presided over by Judge Faisal Al-Khuraibet, has modified the verdict of a lower court that sentenced a Kuwaiti teenager to four years in jail with hard labor, fined him KD 4,000 and suspended his driver’s license for one year, for driving under the influence of alcohol and possession of hashish.

The higher court refrained from imposing a sentence but ordered the defendant to post bail of KD 1,000 and to sign a pledge of good conduct for one year.

Case files indicate the teenager was arrested when his car overturned on the road as the rescue officers discovered he was under the influence of alcohol. The officers also found an undisclosed quantity of hashish in the car. He was then referred to the Public Prosecution, which charged him with drunk driving and possession of hashish for sale and personal consumption.

However, lawyer for the defendant, Attorney Zaid Al-Khabbaz, questioned the arrest and prosecution procedures. He pleaded for leniency towards his client, considering his young age. He also asked the court not to refer his client for rehabilitation at the Psychiatric Hospital and to refrain from imposing punishment on him.

After carefully analyzing the arguments and pieces of evidence presented by both sides, the higher court ruled in favor of the defendant.

In another case, the Misdemeanor Court acquitted a Kuwaiti woman, in her 50s, of insulting a female compatriot who, in turn, was fined KD 150 for beating the former.

Lawyer for the acquitted woman, Attorney Abdulmohsen Al-Qattan, argued in court that the case filed against his client was fabricated.  He demanded for acquittal of the woman due to lack of incriminating evidence and the court ruled in her favor. (link)

Do citizens (or anyone for that matter) ever serve time for crimes they commit? Has anyone seen the kinds  of lawyers in the courts? Chicks with full make-up and 4-inch stilleto heels with short dresses covered up by their black (lawyer) robe chatting and laughing on their phones or young guys with their cool sunglasses walking around the courts, those are lawyers who get these people off?? At least KSA still cuts off heads and UAE will jail anyone who has drugs regardless of where they are from.

True or False- Kuwaiti Sheikh converts to Christianity?

Kuwaiti's Royal Prince Abdullah al-Sabah converted To Christianity from Islam. He stated, "If they kill me because of it, then I will appear before Jesus Christ and I will be with Jesus Christ forever." The Royal Prince went on to say (in a recorded Audio tape),

He stated “I will accept whatever they do to me, because the truth in the Bible has guided me towards the right path.”

Kuwaiti's future king, just amazing

Is this story true or false?

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Qatari royals buy Italian fashion house Valentino - No stopping the Qataris!

 Iconic Italian fashion house Valentino has been snapped up by the Qatari royal family for €700m (US$857.46m), marking one of the most prominent purchases of a European top designer brand by an emerging market investor.

Valentino said Mayhoola for Investments SPC, which is backed by a leading Qatari investor, had acquired full ownership of Valentino Fashion Group from London-based private equity fund Permira and Italian textile entrepreneurs Marzotto.

Valentino did not disclose financial details of the sale nor name the investor. But two sources close to the deal told Reuters the Quatari royal family had acquired Valentino in a deal that values it about €700m.
Founded by designer Valentino Garavani, the Italian high-end fashion brand acquired global fame thanks to its trademark bright-red chiffon dresses, loved by princesses and Hollywood stars alike.

Perella Weinberg Partners was the adviser for the Qataris, while Mediobanca and UniCredit advised Valentino.

Valentino is the latest Italian luxury brand to be bought by a foreign investor, a sign of the resilience of the sector even as Italy sinks into a deep recession. (link)

How about focusing some attention to the lost children left behind by Qatari students studying abroad!

(Ali Hamad Al-Sulaiti would be one citizen to start with)

Car accessory shop in Fahaheel

There aren't too many accessory shops that are like the states, if any. I wish there was an Autozone or something like it here instead of having to go to 10 different places to get things for your car. This place is in Fahaheel tucked away from the main streeet which is nice. You can drive your car up inside the parking area and get out of the traffic. They have all kinds of things for cars from China of course but we're in Kuwait so this is as good as it gets. They also do upholstery, stickers and tint. I went there to get the black sun screens for my car until I get the glass tinted.

The last picture is of the tow hook I want to add to my SUV for the time someone dares to rear end me, they will have their front end taken off.

Friday, July 13, 2012

‘Ramadan’ on July 20

‘Ramadan’ on July 20:

KUWAIT CITY, July 12, (KUNA): Astronomical calculations indicate that the holy month of Ramadan will most likely start in Kuwait next Friday, July 20, Meteorologist Dr Saleh Al-Ujairi said Thursday.

Al-Ujairi pointed out that the new crescent will be observed next Thursday.

While the crescent would only be visible for one minute in Kuwait, other countries will be able to witness the new crescent for up to 18 minutes.

Al-Ujairi added other countries will be able to witness the crescent in one night for a period of 32 to 47 minutes, adding that this year’s Ramadan would complete 30 days.

The Kuwaiti meteorologist noted that people will be able to see the new crescent on first day of fasting with naked eye for a period of 41 minutes.

Al-Ujairi said that the period of fasting on the first day will be 15 hours and 18 minutes, gradually decreasing to 14 and 33 minutes by the end of the month.

The holy month of Ramadan is a month of fasting for Muslims across the world.

The beginning of the fast is announced upon the actual sighting of the crescent, and not based on lunar calculations only. It is a month of great boon in the Islamic faith, and fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam.

Random things in Kuwait

If you take the time to look around Kuwait you will notice funny things all over. Here are a few random things I found interesting.

I saw this restaurant near the Early Bird cafe in Jabriya. Has anyone tried it?

 Did you know Oprah has a salon in Kuwait?
 What happens when one doesn't use spell check.
 The Eiffel Tower in Kuwait.
 I finally got a picture of the way cleaners are transported to their sites. When it was winter the poor guys were huddled together and now that it's summer they look for shade. There has to be a better way to transport these workers.
Let's see what else I can find.......

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Nottingham Forest sold to Kuwait’s Al-Hasawi family

 British football club Nottingham Forest has confirmed that Kuwait’s Al-Hasawi family has completed the takeover of the two-time European Cup winners.

Fawaz, Abdulaziz and Omar Al-Hasawi have agreed to acquire the controlling stake from Nigel Doughty, who died in February four months after putting the club up for sale. The club did not disclose financial details of the sale.

“It is an honour and privilege for the Al-Hasawi family to assume control of this great club steeped in history and with the outstanding legacy left by its previous owner Nigel Doughty,” the Al-Hasawi’s said in a statement.

“We know there are challenging times ahead of us to bring the club back to its glory days and we look forward with excitement towards a new, successful future.”

The family, who made its fortune in the refrigeration and air-conditioning business, added that fans can “be assured of our best efforts in bringing the Reds back to the top of the table.”

The club, which won the European Cup in 1979 and 1980, dropped out of the Premier League in 1999. It finished 19th in the 24-team Championship last campaign.

The Al-Hasawi family said they planned to hold a news conference on July 14 at the club’s City Ground stadium.(link)

Maybe Kuwait will do better with a European team because their own football (soccer) team sucks! When I watch footage from the footballers in the 80's they looked like real men but today with all the cross-dressers, homos and soft Kuwaiti guys it's hard to find a real man amongst them. Maybe they should get some boyatt (butch looking girls) to join the team because some of them look and act more manly.

I bet I'm going to get some comments about this. Oh well, truth hurts!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

AWARE Center- Ramadan Tips (Do's and Don'ts)

AWARE Center:

17 Jul 2012, 7:00 pm By Dr. Ibrahim Al-Adsani

How should I greet Muslims on the occasion of Ramadan? How should I reply if they greet me? Should my public behavior change in Ramadan? When and where can I eat during daylight hours? How should I handle food gifts from neighbors or colleagues? What should I expect if I accept an invitation to break the fast? What will happen on the roads? When is the best time to shop? Will my paperwork get done? And how should I look at non-productivity and excessiveness? In his 20-minute presentation, Dr. Ibrahim will answer all these questions and many more. If you are interested, the AWARE Center is the most appropriate place to visit on July 17th, 2012 at 7:00pm

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cleaners working in the hot Sun

I know a lot of cleaners work in harsh conditions but seeing them walking in the desert on a scorching hot day was really eye opening. It was around 11:30 am when I pulled up to the road heading toward the base. I noticed the cleaner guys in the desert and it was over 100 degrees. Some of them had gathered under a tree for a break. I didn't see any kind of coolers or water so I headed to the security tent and got a few bottles for the guys.

I headed off base around 1:30 pm with more water but they weren't around. They should be doing this kind of work at day break instead of during the heat of the day.