Monday, May 30, 2011


I love contrast and extremes. I seem to be drawn to it for some reason and it fascinates me. I see a lot of contrasts in this city and even though I've lived here for a while, I don't think I'll ever get bored if it.

Yesterday on the way to work, the taxi driver took a road that I don't normally take. On this particular street there is a row of maybe three or four stunning mansions. I can't really describe how amazing these houses are or compare them to anything in the U.S. because we simply don't have anything that I can think to compare them to. Between a couple of these mansions there is an empty lot of sand. I think there was an older mansion there that was probably demolished. On this plot of sand, there is a black, three-sided tent. I assume this is the same kind of tent that many Gulf Arabs lived in years ago, but which has now become essentially obsolete. This particular tent has been there for some time and I can only assume that it belongs to the same person who lives in the mansion next door.

One night, Ray picked me up from work and we drove down this same street. I noticed the tent was lit up and there was a group of about 20 men seated inside. I was amazed. With mansions on either side, someone decided to have a friendly gathering in a tent. With all the money and apparent progress that has taken place in this country, it seems that someone still desires to remember the way life used to be. I would really like to meet that person, whoever he is.

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