The trials and tribulations of driving.

If you live in Dubai and have been on social media you would have most probably seen the uproar regarding the blog article which was published on The National website (  The author wrote a retracting article today, which didn’t help her cause, but it was worth a try.  I could go on about how stupid the girl is for a) writing such a terrible article and b) admitting her reckless driving to readers publicly; but to be fair she is 22 years old. She is young, she is silly.

The Editor wrote defensive comments on the Motoring Middle East FB page and a note on the original article. What they The National should have done as @mita56 eloquently says in her blog ( mentored the girl and proof read the article before it was published. The newspaper and the Editor threw her to the wolves, and we are horrible ravenous wolves on social media in the UAE.  The newspaper should apologise to this girl for putting her in this situation and to the public for acting so shoddily.  The likelihood of that happening especially the latter part is negligible. Accountability is not a word that is favoured with companies in this side of the world.

As bad as the article is, it has brought up the issue of driving in the UAE (again). Driving here is scary for everyone, even experienced drivers. I have been driving for nearly 20 years but I still get nervous occasionally. I have to explain to visitors that we drive defensively, always watching all mirrors and windows for drivers coming from anywhere and everywhere. People change lanes without indicating, people slow down and even stop in the middle of a busy road as they have realized they have gone the wrong way (favourite sport by Saudi’s – I wont start ranting about their driving), others like driving in the opposite direction to pass traffic. Different emirates have different kind of drivers; Abu Dhabi drivers are arrogant and like driving up to your bumper in the fast lane to push you out of the way, Sharjah drivers like braking suddenly, RAK drivers enjoy being in the fast lane in really old Nissan Sonny’s and not moving (I am generalizing but you get the jist).

The problem here is that we have (nearly) all driven badly here for so long and gotten away with it. We have had to drive badly to accommodate other people and their bad driving which makes it a vicious circle. There does need to be education on how to drive, but the police and RTA also have to stop bad drivers from driving on the road.

A prime example is an awful girl I have had the misfortune to know. She passed her driving test only a few months ago. Within one week of passing her driving test she drove to Ras Al Khamiah – she drove in the opposite direction of the traffic. She didn’t get stopped or fined. The next week she had an accident somewhere in Dubai. Another time, she damaged her hire car twice so badly in one weekend that the police had to drive her home, but they didn’t confiscate her licence. She has gained more fines and points in the few months of passing her test, than I have ever received in my lifetime. The hire car company has given her approximately 3 new cars since she started driving. She then decided she wanted a big car, so she bought a brand new Pajero. Luckily she is that silly that she paid a huge amount to get a “Limited Edition” Pajero; it means we can spot her a mile away and drive away from her.  Considering how many times, the police have been called to deal with her accidents they have not reviewed her file and thought she should lose her licence.

She is one dangerous driver but what about the rest??  Ok driving dangerously is a subjective test but if you receive a certain amount of fines and accidents shouldn’t that tell the RTA/police that they have to step in and remove the person’s right to drive?

As we are ranting about driving here are my pet peeves of driving on a daily basis here:

  1. Not wearing a seatbelt,
  2. Driving without your lights on at night,
  3. Driving with broken lights at night and never fixing them,
  4. Kids not being buckled up in the back,
  5. Kids sitting on parents laps especially drivers laps in the front of the car,
  6. Kids hanging out of the windows,
  7. Kids driving 4×4 (I once saw kids about 11 driving a massive 4×4),
  8. Driving up to the bumper of the car in front,
  9. Driving really slowly in the fast lane,
  10. Driving in all the lanes when the slow lanes are empty – all should drive in the slow lanes and then overtake to the faster ones,
  11. Mini-van drivers driving really badly with loads of people in the car,
  12. Mini-van drivers bursting their tyres every bloody day; do you know we get a heart attack when those tyres burst in front of us,
  13. Not putting your fog lights on when its foggy,
  14. Putting on hazard lights when it’s foggy or rainy. FFS!
  15. Driving slowly in the fast lane whilst talking on the phone. If you want to talk on the phone go to the side and lounge around there for a while,
  16. Not indicating when changing lanes or keeping on the indicator when you are not intending to bloody change lanes.

I could go on but I will control myself for now.

I am very bad at not indicating when I change lanes but do so nowadays cos I know I’m acting terribly by not warning others. I indicate at home so I should do it here as well.

At the end of the day we need to all start changing and hopefully others will follow our lead.


I was planning to write a blog tonight about something that has irritated me in a while. But then I turned on the TV when I got home to catch up on the BBC news and my irritation turned to tears of despair. It doesn’t matter what is going on with your lives right now but there are people that have just died, lost their livelihood and/or loved ones due to a humongous earthquake and awe-shockingly huge tsunami. Everything this weekend has paled in comparison to what we have witnessed in Japan.

I woke up late Friday morning and turned over to read my twitter timeline and all I could see were tweets saying “#prayforjapan” or giving the magnitude of the earthquake so of course I ran to the tv and started watching. What I saw was the tsunami live going towards Sendai. I had to stop watching after a while. But the full force of that wave didn’t hit me until later on in the evening when I watched the news again. The devastation that these two natural disasters caused to one country was astounding. The fact that not many people died from the earthquake is testament to the sound government planning and stringent building regulations in the country. The “beaucracy” as some have ridiculously called it, saved the lives of thousands of people. However, despite having one of the best infrastructures to disperse a tsunami, it was still powerful enough to destroy cities and remove villages from the map of Japan.

Tonight I watched in a voyeuristic manner, the BBC and NHK channels following people looking for loved ones in North Japan. Some found their loved ones and others have yet to be successful. Then there were stories of people who were in the tsunami and by some miracle survived. It was tearful to watch. Like all outside Japan we are watching with fascination, despair and a morbid curiosity.

Whilst we watch please think of those people who have lost their homes, their livelihood, their families/friends and their way of lives. The Red cross has asked so far for no material goods to be provided and for money only for now until the charities and Japanese government can assess what is needed for the people who have been affected. Please help if you can.

Here are some websites that are taking donations:

Red Cross UK –

American Red Cross –

Google crisis response –

If there are any other charities that you know are taking donations please let me know so we can add to the list.

For any British citizens – please contact the Foreign and Commonwealth office for British nationals in Japan and their relatives in the UK +(44) 207 008 0000


Sandance 11 march 2011

@t_in_Dxb is carrying the lead singers bag from brand new heavies -. How cool ain’t she

The other pics show @thisisramy @alisonlehr @sunjayv as well as a bloke wearing a fluorescent tutu and a bird that thought that easy access to her hoochie is what we all needed to see!

Good night though with Brand New Heavies and Roger Sanchez blowing up the sandy place :). Shame I missed the fireworks but my legs were hurting!

N style

Today I’m blogging from N-style moe. I didn’t used to be a fan as they had been rude to me previously. However with vouchers and the fact they are close to my home I had to try them out.

The place runs like clockwork. They have a proper system and it’s a full blown massive nail pampering factory. Over the few times I have been here the girls have been friendlier and this time they gave me the headset to watch tv (America’s got talent! – there is a bird with my name singing right now! Weird)! Also You get asked if you would like a drink after the second visit

So if you come here a few times the better the service. Or maybe it’s my luck.

So anyway the nails. As expected the nail technicians are technicians and know how to do their job. it’s all very mechanical like being in a nail factory but it’s all good if you get good nails at the end.

7/10 – good but not spectacular

Claim your inheritance now!

The spam messages regarding claiming  my inheritance are getting cleverer and cleverer. This one really impressed me today.



Definitely, I know that this letter will be a surprising one to you.

Firstly, I will like to introduce myself formally as Mr. Kwesi Beko, The
Governor of the Bank Of Ghana.

You are been officially contacted by me today because your Inheritance
Funds were Re-deposited into the “Federal Suspense Account” of Bank Of
Ghana this week after it was confirmed un-claimed by the Ghana Federal
Reserved Bank. Secondly, because you did not forward your Claim as the
Right beneficiary on time.

Well known to all, The Bank Of Ghana is a Financial Body that checkmates
all in-flow and out-flow of funds that comes in and out of Republic of
Ghana. So if anybody is telling you that your funds is with any other bank
right here in Ghana ,the person is not only tricking you to Divert your
rightfully Inheritance, but also a criminal and we advice you discontinue
further communication with the persons(s).

This morning at about (10:15am Standard Pacific Time), I was alerted by my
Secretary that Three men were at my Office Reception waiting to see me and
so I told my Secretary to let them in.

To my surprise they were two Swedish and one Ghanaian Attorney, and they
introduced themselves as (Mr. Tim Bjorkman, Mr. Roland Gulf, both from
Swedish) and accompanied with them was a Ghanaian Attorney with the name
(Barrister. Kofi Kwame).

Really these men were unexpected by me because their visit was impromptu.
I had to ask them why they came to see me in person and they said that
they were here to Collect the Inheritance Bill Sum of US$7,000,000:00
(Seven Million United State Dollars Only) which rightfully belongs to you,
on your behalf. These foreigners actually claimed this beyond reasonable

At this development I asked them who authorized them to re-visit our Bank
on Friday for the Collection of this Payment and they told me that you
asked them to come and collect this Funds on your Behalf. In fact this was
the biggest shock that the Bank Of Ghana have ever received so far because
your Inheritance Funds is still in the “Federal Suspense Account” of Bank
Of Ghana, yet you sent these men to come and collect these Funds on your
behalf without notifying us.

We in this office do not understand why you sent these men to come and
Collect your Funds on your behalf. If actually you want them to help you
collect your Inheritance, at least you should have informed me as the
Governor Of the Bank of Ghana.

They actually tendered some Vital Documents, which proved that you
actually sent them for the Collection of these Funds. Honestly, it really
baffles me that you took such decision without my consent.

Here is the Document, which they tendered to this Office today.

2. HIGH COURT INJUNCTION (stating that you authorized them to come and
receive your funds on your behalf).

Actually, these Documents which they tendered to this office is a clear
Proof that you sent them to Collect this Funds for you. Finally, I told
them to come back on Friday morning and they promised to come back. As the
Governor Of this Noble Bank and also the Legal Payment Adviser whom has
the final Signatory to the release of all International Transfers of any
“PENDING” FUNDS that leaves the Shore of this Country, I was supposed to
Release this Funds to them but I refused to do so because I wanted to hear
from you first. Due to the Nature of my job, I will not want to make any
mistake in Releasing this Funds to anyone except you whom is the
Recognized as the true Beneficiary to this Funds which is you.

These Foreigners has actually provided us with an account below with one
of the TD bank in NEW YORK where they said that you want us to Wire your
funds into.



Kindly clarify us on this issue before we make this Payment to these
foreigners whom came on your behalf.

Note: I personally have attached a copy of the picture, which was taken
when these foreigners came to my office. They really did not know that
they were snapped, because I have a Digital Security Camera here in my
office. In this picture the foreigners where dressed in white shirts,
while their Attorney was dressed in white traditional wear and our Chief
Security Officer was dressed in a dark suit standing and interrogating

You can view this picture for clarification.

In receipt of this confidential Letter, you are required to call this Bank
immediately you receive this Confidential Letter. TEL: +233-(0) 279344710

Mr. Kwesi Beko
Executive Gov Bank Of Ghana)
Bank of Ghana
One Thorpe Road
P.O. Box GP 2674
TEL: +233-(0) 279344710