Thursday, 3 September 2009

Construction TV

I suspect there are reasons for pouring concrete from a great height down a metal tube in the early hours of the morning, reasons other than to keep me awake. Maybe it's too hot during the day, maybe it's because of the trucks on the road. Who knows, all I know is that last night there was no sleep to be had in Sue's Abu Dhabi flat where I was staying.

We have a laugh about construction TV at Sue's place. Her large living room window looks out onto five building sites, yes five, so we get to see the cranes criss crossing each other with their heavy loads, amazing that they don't get tangles up like kite strings might. Construction TV has a continuous show, a show of young men mostly from the Asian subcontinent busy on scaffolding, busy climbing up the crane structure and along the beam, busy dropping things that clang and crash in the middle of the night. A show of crane ballet and hard hats.

Sue thinks that the construction company have hired someone to come in at 6am on a Friday just to bang metal on metal, not so good with a hangover. And tonight sounds to be no different given the level of the noise outside. I wonder what time they'll start pouring concrete.

Staying in Abu Dhabi is preferable to the other option, driving daily from Al Ain. The road surprises are even more surprising in Ramadan as people speed home for their rest and then their Iftar meal. Driving in a small Yaris is not that safe so I can't wait until I can organise my 4wd.

Iftar, or the end of the fasting day, is a special time. People gather together to share a meal, a social time. We were in a taxi when Iftar was called and the driver shared his pack of dates with us, he smiled and was really happy that he could drop us off and join others to feast the night away. We gave him a lot extra, he deserved it. He was taking us to the Iftar meal at the Sheraton with some of our colleagues, a great night out in a festive atmosphere.

Another upside to staying in AD is the ability to get down to the sea, something I miss in Al Ain. I wandered along the corniche in the steaming heat, soaking in the golden sunset and the smell of the sea. One of the photos captures the golden air, the other is of crane ballet.

I'm sure the Qatar crew can relate to this post. Sleeping with the iPod on to drown out the noise of concrete pouring in the night was a regular occurrence there too. I missed you all when I was walking along the corniche, not nearly as much fun by myself.

Sorry, having trouble uploading the images. Will try again a bit later.

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