Saturday, October 29, 2005

Dubai upside down

Dubai has grown, there is no doubt about it. The finest hotels are constantly being competed with, so with each new year (sometimes month) we get something grander than we could imagine. Dubai is very often in the International news and there are not many people in the world who have escaped hearing about this amazing oasis.

So what happens if the country zooms full steam ahead but leaves society dangling by a thread. A lot of people here are still living in the 70's. I know plenty of National families who are just getting their first satellite dish. Recently the 7 Days newspaper featured a story about a mentally handicapped girl who had been living below the poverty line in Dubai for a very long time. After this was published I read plenty of comments from expats who were 'shocked' to even think that this could happen in Dubai. Afterall, Dubai was such a progressive country, right? Well now you know you were wrong.

I keep hearing about money being poured into projects, mainly to lure foreigners into staying here and keeping their cash in the country. Then I turn around and see everyone driving around town with their kids sitting in the front seats of vehicles. I start to wonder how much money they ploughed into their driver awareness week this year. I must have missed it because nothing springs to mind. I remember them handing out cash to 'good' drivers........blahhhhhhhh we can all use our indicators when we see the Caltex car coming up behind us with a Police Officer in the front seat.

There was an speech earlier this year by a particular religious scholar pushing the government to enforce that married women finish work by 4pm and be encouraged to produce at least 6 children....yeh right....and after baby no.3 will they provide them with a free 7 seater van (and dont forget a few Mothercare care seats at DH.700 a pop)... I actually gave a local woman one of my old car seats since it was in good nick and had cost a small fortune. She liked it, and said it was a great chair to strap her daughter in for feeding time, but still chose to perch her up on her knee in the car, making sure she was in the correct position for a straight shoot throught the windscreen. That carseat never got the chance to smell the backseat of her vehicle. Shame like.

Tonight I was sitting here wondering what to write about when I heard the revving outside. Of course it was a line up of 14 (YES, 14) quad bakes preparing for their nightly race. The drivers all aged between 6 and 14, some of them had 4 persons to a bike were getting excited and yelling. Did the Police not announce recently that they were so proud of the number of these killing machines they have raked in? Perhaps a short stint in jail for the affluent fathers might help a little. OH wait, I forgot...Vitamin W. Yes, they will just pull a little of that. Maybe the problem is the mothers have gone over the 6 kid mark and have no control left. It's not like the 70's anymore...these kids are vulnerable now.

So we are back to the delightful government and how much they care about educating their poor (so very poor) nationals in safety and the value of life. I hate hypocritical people, and there are so many here who claim to be improving the country. Well a country cannot survive without people. The government will have to start issuing Nationality to foreigners soon, there will be few locals left.


Keef said...

Just noticed your 'my blog is worth' thing. $0.00. Hmm. Tried it on mine: $12,419.88! Secret Dubai is worth $32,178.78. But just to put us all in the shade, the Religious Policeman is worth $146,215.86. And possibly the world's most famous blog, Instapundit, is worth a whopping $3,826,452.12. This for a guy whose average post is one line of words. God only knows how this works.

CG said...

Yes, I was most dissapointed to see the value of my blog.
I may be deleting that particular item from my blog site soon. You would think my value should go up after advertising for them....

BuJ said...

After such an interesting post you guys prove yet again that Dubai is all about the money by talking about the blog's value! perfect!

I will choose to comment on the entry instead :) I quite enjoyed the part when inspiration struck you when a pair of 7 quads decided to consume loads of hydrocarbons in no time, as well as produce that annoying fart-like sounds.. ugh...

On another point, it's really sad to hear these stories about horrendous driving practices (especially including children). Unfortunately this is all due to the lack of education. Remember a few years ago when the seat belt law came into place? So many of these laws were introduced in the past, the one that i remember the most was the hands-free law where people weren't allowed to hold phone handsets while driving. That law was quickly overruled by popular demand. However, for some weird reason the authorities decided that wearing a seatbelt is very important if you so happen to be driving and before the law was enforced they went to great extents to tell people about it (yes, including locals).

A few years later, I've never seen a policeman stop anyone for not wearing their belt. This is not due to the lack of 'drive' from the police but I honestly think it's because people generally abide by that rule now. Of course there will be the occassional smart Alec/Abdulla who's above the law but in general it's working.

So instead of pouring money on speed bumps, speed cameras, tow trucks, and expensive pnumatics that are designed to cut people out of mangled cars, spend a fraction of that on driver education and reap the benifits.

Anonymous said...

Do your duty, Chevy. You should of called the cops at once. You'd be doin those families an incalculable favor...

(I included that American spellin just for you...)

CG said...

el condo - I had to have a minivan impounded yesterday due to its wrecklass driving (used a little bit of vitamin w there..hehe), so didnt want to call the cops again. I called them last week regarding the fireworks but they had all gone for taraweeh prayer...and one of the fireworks landed on my doorstep.
Buj - All I want to see are the adverts regarding mobie phone usage in the mosque pulled off the air and replaced with film footage showing what happens to kids faces when they are thrown half way through a windscreen then sucked back inwards again (whiplash to the extremities). Few people realise that if you are lucky you will be thrown the entire way and onto the road and killed. Unlucky ones are maimed beyond belief. Anything other than childrens car seats is equal to 1st degree child abuse.

Nuff said

moryarti said...

A shout goes out to the driver with his toddler on his lap and doing the "look... my 1 year old is driving on SZR!" thing..

I hope the dweeb realizes that he is using his baby as an airbag..