A wise man once said....

"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen you may learn something new." Dalai Lama

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Just Leaving UAE

Hi, I finished in Ruwais this morning. Now getting ready to go to Australia. The start of another journey. So now I'm in Dubai Airport just about to get on the plane... Back to Thailand. I've just done this quick video on my apple macbook pro, using the onboard web cam. Felt a bit self concious, so am pleased at how it has come out. And clearly no editing!!! Pretty simply really. I had tried with Final Cut to make a few videos but could not get it together.


Friday, 11 February 2011

Lazy Homemade Bar B Q - Ruwais Camp

Forget work. Yes forget it for a few days. We had a busy time of it yesterday. Priority was to forget the main works and concentrate on more important matter, making a new bar b q complete with a stand up frame. Wonderful job they did to.

One of our quality Inspectors, Ronald spent half the day supervising!!!! Whats so difficult and involved in making a Bar B Q you ask? So read below see if it is the way to go, maybe you just prefer to buy a small one in the local DIY shop at I am sure a minimal cost.

But we did it our way.......
Our Method and approach was simple, but perhaps, just perhaps, a bit over the top...

Well first take
one international Korean Contractor, preferable not to far from our camp,
two specialist welders,
high quality steel plate cut and bent to required shape,
special (expensive) welding rods,
essential of course to have full time Health andSafety personnel on standby watching proceeding,
additional inspections by senior management from the Contractor,
and approval and acceptance inspections by the Supervising Clients Engineers and,
then and only then, have it delivered preferable in a decent 4x4 (looks better than arriving in the back of a pickup) and then have it set up by yet more workers!!!!

This approach whilst you might consider it a bit excessive does 100% for sure result in a working fit for purpose Bar B Q.

We did get what we wanted. But cost...... Don't ask!!! As the joke goes it was free, but for everything else there is Master Card!!!!

So having had it made and delivered to our camp we decided to give it a christening this lunchtime. Ronald again took charge of the cooking while the rest of us mucked in with the supply of beer, soft drinks and generally getting things set up. We also seemed to be constantly in the way of the cooking!

What did we have? Fresh fish, Bonito and some snapper. Also squid and a couple of pork dishes and of course the old standby favourites of Chicken and Sausagges. All washed down with a few cold beers. It was quite a collection of people as well. Filipino, Korean, Indian, Pakistani, Brits and all enjoying. No ladies which was a pity as they always bring an added something to such events. But not to be. So I can tell you all the salads and extras came from the canteen!!!!!

The highlight for me was the abundant supply of proper chilies. To date, all we've had in the canteen are large chillies that really have no taste but just look the part. So for me a good start to the meal. Ronald, Arnold and Roderick are Filipino

and were keen to strut their stuff and impressed us by producing some excellent 'home' foods. We had some Sisi, which is best described as being basically ground pork with spices. Very tasty. There was also a stew which was good but not dissimilar to something I might have cooked. Basically a not so hot pork stew without lots of Filipino spices. Stuffed squid and several sauces.

I was really enjoying myself but a little uncomfortable. Almost like I was there under false pretence. Unknown to all the others sitting with me, and indeed to you as a reader!!! I had, earlier in the week given my notice and plan to be gone before next weekend. Therefore it was a bit strange to be sitting amongst everyone talking about the next Bar Ba Q.

I'd decided to leave this place and my current employment. Basically I have a chance to go to Australia and take Wanna with me. So really not much of a choice.

I just said, I gave notice a few days back. Can you believe I only have to give one weeks notice. I think it was considered from the company as a good idea so they could get rid of 'undesirables' at short notice. They have used this approach to their advantage on several occasions already, two guys that I know off. So I also realize it works both ways. Now its my turn to go, and within 7 days! But then having tendered my resignation they ask me to stay on for a few days extra! Seems a bit illogical to me. Still whats few days if it helps out, promotes good will and I get paid....

What next you ask? Well I'll be adding a couple of additional blogs in UAE before I go. Then a lot of new ones covering life back in Thailand for a week or so before onwards to Australia. Just reading over this I realize there are probably a lot of Bar B Q stories to follow from the land of Oz!!!

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Chinese New year? When where How. Well I missed it!

Chinese New year? When where How. Well I missed it!
All the Koreans from our Construction Companies had a day off and the site slowed down. I think they went off to Abu Dhabi to play golf and have a few glasses of rice wine and Korean food.
We, that's Deepak and he's one of our engineers.
We went off to the Al Ain Air Show.


As shows go it was OK. About 8,000 spectators turned up and it seemed the united nations were there and every nation you could mention had a presence. Very impressive. It also added to the atmosphere of the whole thing. There were some beautiful looking ladies mingling with the 'guiness bottles', you know the Arab ladies wearing the all covering long black cloth. That's how I describe them anyway! But everybody mixed in and the feeling of general harmony and sense of we're here to enjoy was palatable and indeed quite exceptional.

View Al Ain Air Show in a larger map
But all that said and done. and to be absolutely honest: one aeroplane looks very much like any other to me. I know some are jets and some are run using other stuff but you get my drift...So what to do reporting of such an event. I took some footage and this afternoon looked over it. So much blue sky and smoke! So I decided to attach one clip without to much editing. Its got the running commentary from the show. The pilot is without doubt a very very capable guy.
There were side attractions including simulated formula 1 racing cars, microlites, go karting, and believe it or not there was a Starbucks. Imagine an event with such a stall. Seems a bit strange, not having some local merchant doing the selling.
Fortunately it was a warm day , bit windy which I suspect helped to keep us from baking in the sun. Mind you it did not help those buying ice cream,
getting stuck in the que to return to the stadium. Tends to melt all over you!

Then you look at the security. The were Lady police. They to must have been hot. Strange sight to start with. All of them without exception tended to on the 'bulky' almost like it was part of the entry requirements. They also did not look the type of person to be messing with!!
We gave up at about 4.30pm. Well I did and went into Abu Dhabi for a quick look round. Quite busy with plenty of crazy driving. But that's a topic for another time.