Monday, June 25, 2012

Ridiculous story, ridiculous sentence

Death sentences for Briton and Syrian for drug dealing

ABU DHABI // A 19-year-old Syrian and a Briton, 21, were both sentenced to death today for selling an undercover policeman Dh1,500 worth of marijuana.

After the verdict was announced, the Briton’s mother collapsed outside the Criminal Court while the Syrian’s mother tried to comfort her, telling her they could appeal the decision.
The two men were caught after a CID officer posing as a customer bought 20 grams of the drug. The officer had earlier bought Dh500 worth to test it and confirm it actually was marijuana.
A Sudanese man who was also a defendant, was sentenced to one year in jail and deportation for taking the drug, while a 17-year-old Emirati was sent for rehabilitation.
Previously in court, defence lawyers had attacked the credibility of the police investigations, because the witness said he did not know the address of the defendants.
He also said that the Syrian asked the Briton to get him the drugs from the car in Arabic, which lawyers said did not make sense.
Moreover, the two were speaking in English, which, they said, the CID officer did not understand.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Leaving letter in Indglish

Communication here can be a challenge. There is such an eclectic mix of nationalities, speaking so many different native languages, all trying to communicate with each other. The largest groups of non-English-first-language speaking nationals are from India, Pakistan and The Philippines. In their striving to communicate, a number of phrases seem to have become like an accepted pigeon-English.

There are plenty of other sites that have outlined these like a UAE-English-English-UAE phrase book, so I won't repeat fully here, but a few examples are:-

Maamsirrrr : Sir/Madam
Same same : the same
Not in station : on leave
Do the needful : do what is neccesary
Please revert : get back to me

Anyway, today I saw an email that came into our office from a staff member from one of our suppliers. He is leaving his company, for what reason I don't know - it can't be his fantastic communication skills! It is written in classic "Indglish". It's brilliant and I wanted to share it .....

Dear All, 
As a change in my professional environment , I am relieving from my job, by today. 

  Many thanks for all who has helped me to build up a career in the professional environment with lots of experiences. 

  As a part of my career if I has hurt anybody, it was with a good intention only & I never feel sorry for the same. 

  Whoever I found something bad I used to criticize as I believe that a dearest friend should be the biggest criticizer, without checking the designations, as basically all are humans only. 

  And if anybody felt if I had cruised them badly, please provide the proper reason & I will be on their feet. 

  Any way we will meet somewhere around, those who have seen me. Or didn’t have till. 

  Hope some will remember me as a good friend or you will do as a enemy also. Anyway thanks for the remembrance. I deserved that only. 

  Any body wishes to contact me can mail to , from here onwards, because I don’t have access to the official ID herein. 

  Thanks & Regards 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Feeling patriotic...

So here you go... 'av it!

Football mad

So we've made it through to the Quarter Finals. England play Italy tomorrow night. I have watched all the England games so far, despite the last few not kicking off until 22:45 here. All the games now kick off at that time. So I'll be off to Y Bar at the Yas Rotana again with a few mates to go and shout for my country. And if we win, it will be the age old rivals, Germany, in the Semis! Can't wait. Surely our time has come! And I hear Hodgson has been making sure the guys do plenty of penalty practice!

So in support and celebration I have decked out the front of the house. I had to. There was a house round the corner that had German flags all over it, so I can't let them have a free reign!

I think I will augment them with some Union Jacks and leave them up for the Olympics too!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Funky mosque

I saw this mosque as I was driving through Mohammed Bin Zayed City yesterday. Sorry about the quality, I took it with my BlackBerry. One day I will do an album just of mosques. I love the variety of architecture of mosques.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Worn Tyres #2

Since I wrote this...

...a couple of things have happened. Firstly I witnessed a tyre burst right in front of me. I was travelling on the highway when a pick up pulled out in front of me. It was clearly overloaded with god knows what, piled high covered in blankets. The load was way higher than the front cab of the pick-up. Anyway, I wanted to pass but he was just sticking where he was, so I decided to undertake into the two clear lanes to the right of him. Thank god I did. As I started to pull inside the tyre went. First of all it was like small shredded pieces flying under my car, but as I passed it quickly I could see in my rear view mirror the complete tyre unravelling and spraying all over the road. A few seconds more behind him and it would have been all over my car and would have been pretty dangerous.

Then, today there is a piece in The National about the same subject. Apparently 53 car crashes have been caused by blown tyres already this year in Abu Dhabi, 6 people have died and 7 seriously injured. Last year 17 people died due to burst tyres. Second hand tyres, overloading and speed seem to be the main issues.

So I guess I had a lucky escape!

Full article here...

Friday, June 15, 2012

Veil hid woman from passport scrutiny - The National

Veil hid woman from passport scrutiny - The National

There is so much "wrong " about this whole story. First of all that the guy would try and perform such a stunt. Second the manner in which the veil was used. Third that she was allowed to enter without showing her face. And fourth that the immigration official was leineint because she or he was known to him.

I believe it is perfectly acceptable for immigration officers to ask a lady to show her face to check against the passport photo. However I have seen this not happen on many occasions. This is totally unacceptable in any country. This is an easy ploy for terrorists to use and there should be no way this should be allowed.

As for the guy immigration guy dealing with a friend - this should also not be allowed. When I worked at Sainsbury's in my youth, I was not even allowed to serve a friend at the checkout! It should be standard practice that if the person entering is known personally to the immigration officer that they should be passed over to another. I don't know if this is done in any other countries, but it should be in my opinion.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Hyatt Capital Gate Hotel

Another event Caz missed while she has been back in the UK looking after her son (as well as Madonna - she is gutted!), was a Rat Pack concert with a stay at the Hyatt. I tried selling the tickets, but with no luck, so I figured I may as well use them. I met up with a couple of friends who were also going, had a few drinks and crashed in the room.

The hotel is  very "businessy", the room was very nice, but the pool area and bars catered more to business travellers than tourists. There were some good views from the pool area though where you could see the Sheikh's palaces across the water. Nice.

The Rat Pack was ok, but terrible seats - right off the one side with a poor sideways view. The band were good though!

The room on the 25th floor

Views from the room

The central atrium

Views from the pool area

Looking up to the helipad

The lobby cafe area

A quick video from the pool area

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Jubilee missed

I was a bit gutted to have missed the "once in a lifetime" celebration in the UK for the Queen's Jubilee. Caz was back, but not for good reasons, as her son is in hospital, so she didn't get to see any of it either. I have to say watching some of the footage I did feel a bit emosh, partly missing home and partly just missing the event. I think I'm even more gutted to be missing another "once in a lifetime" in the summer: The Olympics! Really really gutted. But hey ho, I have a telly :-(

I spotted a couple of good videos from the Jubilee that I thought I would share. The first below is an anthem put together with footage of the Queen's life. Very touching. The second - in the link below - is a time-lapse clip of the Jubilee "Flotilla" of boats and ships moving down the Thames as part of the celebrations - awesome!

Friday, June 1, 2012

My Jubilee Desert Boots !

British Food Week at LuLu Hypermarkets

I helped organise a brass ensemble for LuLu Hypermarkets (Where the world comes to shop!) to support the opening of their British Food Week. Originally the request was for the Big Band, but I thought a brass group would be more appropriate and we could play some British "classics".

Below is clip and some photos from the opening at Al Khalidiyah Mall and we will also be playing at Al Wahda Mall (6pm Friday) and Al Mushrif Mall (12 Noon Saturday) this weekend.