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Monthly Archives: February 2010

хомяк, pronounced homyak, is Russian for Hamster.  Scabbers, pictured here, is in fact a Russian Hamster.  He lives in Yousef’s school during the week, and stays with different children during weekends.  We have the pleasure of keeping him here for the long weekend!

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I spend a lot of time in the air. I have done for more than fifteen years.  It’s fair to say that whist I don’t hate flying, there isn’t much out there that impresses me! This was the first time, in a long time, when I was actually excited about a flight.

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Kuwait’s Special Forces put on a fun show at Kuwait Towers last Saturday.  It was the first of its kind and a great success.  It started on time (wow) and was very impressive indeed.  Helicopters, men on ropes (often head first) and beautiful use of flag-coloured smoke.

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I’ve been away for a few days and a little too busy to post.  I have however been taking photos; and I should be able to play catch-up during the forthcoming five-day holiday.  The posts will include photos from the Special Forces event at Kuwait Towers last Saturday, some shots of (and from) the new A380, and a postcard from Hamburg  where I am today.

For this post, I wanted a photo that symbolised a break/pause.  I was inspired by the silly title, and the word ‘Gap’ made the choice obvious.  If you haven’t yet guessed it, it’s a close up of my jeans.  I used a Canon G11 on a macro setting. I’m impressed with what this little camera can do.  I can’t wait to buy a macro lens for my Nikon, which I hope to do in the summer.

Have a wonderful break.

I returned last night from a very frustrating trip to Dubai.  I’ve always known integrity is rare in the business world; now I add decisiveness.  People are so busy covering their backs.  Half – if not more – of their energy is invested in avoiding decisions. Result in our case: A year’s work – of putting small pieces together for a business deal – fell apart yesterday because of one man.  He was born without a spine.

Anyway, this is a positive blog, and positive it shall remain.  My meeting was in Jebel Ali and I had to rent a car to go in.  I therefore had some free time in the afternoon, and for the first time in Dubai I had a car.  I’ve driven there before, but I was stuck often there with colleagues.  Non-photographers are not as patient when, say, we’re waiting for the sun to be at exactly the right angle…

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My travel has increased dramatically this month and I just don’t have any spare time.  I was in Bahrain and Saudi last week, Qatar and Dubai this week, and finally France and Germany next week.  March should be a little lighter.

I was going through our photos and found this one.  I took it back in 2006, when Yousef was just over two.  I had been trying out a new lens in the garden as Yousef watched from the doorway.  When I realised I had the keys in my pocket, I asked him to close the door.  He hesitated, as that would have left him alone inside… His confusion created a wonderful natural expression – which I had to capture.  As mean as it was to do, I’m so glad I did it.

We went bowling on Wednesday.  It was our first time as a family, and I cannot recommend it enough.  No gadgets, no phones, no inturruptions, just good quality family time full of fun with a competitive spirit.

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Our public transport system is not much of a system, and design is not high on the agenda of city planners.  Yet like every aspect of life here, someone, somewhere, gets a ray of inspiration, and something wonderful is realised.  The simplicity and elegance of our old bus stops, is an example of this.  To me, they are the ‘red phone-boxes’ of Kuwait.  Form and function sculptured into an icon.

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