Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Home for Christmas, NYE at Qasr al Sarab

We are leaving tonight to go home for Christmas. We booked our flights ages ago and decided to go with Qatar Airways to save money, but now I am regretting it. Its going to add a few hours to the overall journey, but hey ho (or should I say, hey ho ho ho), think of the money.

It's cold at home, but nowhere near as bad as last year when the snow came. So hopefully our traveling around will be ok. Home in Kent for Christmas, Boxing Day in Hemel with my family and then up to Coventry to stay at my daughters house overnight. Then to Irthlingborough to drop daughter number two off, then back to Kent. Also going to fit in dinner with one of my brothers and his wife who won't be around Christmas Day. So all in all, quite a bit of traveling to do.

The when we get back we will be spending NYE at Qasr al Sarab, an awesome desert resort, right in the Empty Quarter, or Rub' al Khali, near to the Saudi border. We have two nights there, including a Gala Dinner on NYE. Can't wait. Here's a few pictures of the resort...

 ... and here is where it is located (red place-marker) ...! Best make sure my camel is fit and watered !

Friday, December 16, 2011

Car Impounded (not)

I got a really strange call from my car lease company yesterday.

"Sir, do you have your car with you"

"err... yes"

"It's just the police have contacted us to say your car is impounded"

"Well, I can tell you I am looking at it right now and it is definitely not impounded"

"They say it was involved in a very high speed incident and then impounded. The impound period is now over and the vehicle must be collected. They have suspended our company trade license until it is collected"

"I think there is some mistake here."

"Sir, we will speak to them and get back to you"

A couple of hours later....

"Sir, we need to collect your car and take it to the police"

"umm... ok"

"They want to inspect the car"

"Would they not be better inspecting the car the have?"

"We have to take it sir."

So they duly took my car, gave me a replacement and since I have heard nothing.

Intriguing.. can't wait to hear the outcome!

Update: 18/12

Well they have now accepted that the car they have in their pound is not mine (good work Sherlock!) and have released the lease company's trade licence. What a complete waste of everyone's time! 

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Shooting at Al Forsan

We went with a couple of friends to the Al Forsan International Sports Resort. The resort is awesome. It has shooting, wake boarding, karting, paint balling, equestrian sports, off roading, plus a pool and leisure club.

We were invited to go shooting, something we had done before at The Caracal Shooting Club and enjoyed it, so we thought we would go -and I was interested to see how Al Forsan had developed since I visited it while under construction.

There were more lanes at the club than Caracal, but I don't think the quality of the instruction was as good. 

There is a better choice of weapons here - I chose the .38 Smith & Wesson - for that authentic Cowboy and Indians feel!

Not a bad result I guess - especially pleased with the bullseye! 

Next time though I think I am having one of these! Telescopic, laser sight - yes! Always wanted to strike that crawling Action Man pose!

This weekend there is a World Championship Wakeboarding event going on, which looked pretty cool.

The karting track looks like it needs a go too!

There was some camel racing going on, on the TV inside. It shows the camels with the robot riders. When we went they had real jockeys, this was fun to watch.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Abu Dhabi Big Band at The Westin

Last night the ADBB played at the opening of The Westin Hotel in Abu Dhabi. The hotel is located at The Abu Dhabi Golf Club. They provided the band with a "Green Room" which happened to be The Presidential Suite. I took a few piccies on my phone which by no means does it justice, but it was quite stunning. I think I'll book it for a weekend break :-)

Hallway that seemed to go on forever

Bathroom (one of them)

Private cinema (sorry about the guy changing!)

One of the lounges (with golf course views)

 Another lounge

Walk in wardrobe 

Outdoor space (one of them)

Another outdoor space

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Photos from Delhi

Here's an album of my photos from Delhi. I'm afraid I haven't had time to label them yet...

Trip to Delhi

Sairee Beach

I've just started to go through my pictures from our recent trip to Thailand. Here's a couple I took watching the sun go down on Sairee Beach, Koh Toa.

Friday, December 2, 2011

UAE National Day

Today the UAE celebrates 40 years of the union of 7 emirates into The United Arab Emirates. It is a hugely significant day for the Nationals and long term residents of the UAE. The progress made in 40 years is astounding - funded by the discovery of oil in the late '60s/ early '70s.

Much has changed, but many things have been cautiously maintain - and rightly so. They are passionately proud of their heritage and history.

I hope they follow their plan and spend money wisely to support the population well for the days when oil is no more, which inevitably will come.

Here's to the next 40 years!

Mabrook UAE!