Archive for the ‘bahrain’ Category


Thursday, September 30th, 2010

Where am I? I am on our bed in Bahrain with my wife as our two tiny children sleep in-between us. The bed will be sold in an hour or two when a nice Bahrain guy comes and picks it up. The villa is empty. All our things have been packed up and moved out and there is only a bed and some suitcases left in here. We fly tonight back to London. Back home. After more than four years of travelling and adventures its time to put our wheels up and start to plan our lives. Leaving Bahrain has been hell and never ever have I felt more exposed and scared as I have this week. Bahrain is brutal if you are in trouble. We have been stopped from selling our furniture by our landlord because he thinks we are secretly trying to move out without paying a penalty months rent. HSBC have been brutal and any loans or credit cards unpaid result in a travel ban once your present company informs them you are leaving. Luckily we paid off the credit card this month but that’s not enough and they require 20% of the overdraft limit sits in your account just in case some mysterious payment comes out in a months time. HSBC never told me that. Everyone company in Bahrain wants your money and assumes that you will rip them off until proven otherwise and its all very trying.

I managed to get my dream job in London and I start on Monday. I couldn’t take anymore and I said goodbye to my colleagues\friends this afternoon. All on good terms. I enjoyed my work here but not the life and even the desert became insufferable after a year. Professionally its been very productive but on a personal level then life here is dull, mundane, brutally banal but all with nice-ish weather. There is nothing to see and nothing to do and anything conumerable like electronics are old, dated and in short supply. The people are a mixed bag but on the whole Bahrain is are kind yet easy to anger and when they go they explode. If bahrain has been useful in any way then I would say it has de mystified the muslim for me. Before I was like many westerners scared of the beards and the prayers and expecting suicide bombers round every corner but the longer I have been here is the longer that these things are kind of superficial and underneath all this fluff are people like you and me. Same hopes and the same fears.

I lay here watching my young family sleep. I am responsible for them all. I have done a good job to date but I hope the new chapter will be more settled than the last four years. End of an era.


Sunday, August 29th, 2010


I am walking along Gloucester Road, Kensington. I just met a hero in my profession and she likes me. She smiled warmly and we spoke at length about my hopes and fears. I met her colleague and he escorted me to a pub in East London. Inside people laughed and drank and sat around relaxed on this late August Friday afternoon. We laughed as we spoke for some three hours about our profession. I waved goodbye and got the tube home. I walk down a tree lined street where badge cars and young families jostle with tourists as shops and cafes sprawl into the arteries of London a warm brezzy air encapsulating the whole scene. I will be working with this lady. I know it. This will be a chance that I will not get again.


I am in Bahrain. I sit at my desk my head cloudy with frustration and broken promises. I have been here almost two years. The Isolation. The Frustration. I am working in the south of the island and my days are endless and repetitive. Somehow my family is with me but sometimes they disappear. I am frustrated. I want to go but the worlds economies have gone to shit and I will be fired here. There are no new jobs. There are no new options. I must sit it out here alone. Every day the same. The weather the same. The long drive. The covered ladies. The scary locals. No drinks. No pork. No rights. No fun. Nowhere to go, Nothing to do. No culture. No signs of life apart form a pool. And a big car. That’s all. That’s life. I get up and I want to go back to sleep again.


I am in Asia. I live in a small box with my wife and our young son. Sometimes I am in China but mostly Hong Kong. I am out of place. I miss London. I love Asia. I walk along the MTR station and go back to our home. The streets teem with life. The air thick. I am happy here. Work is different. The people are cold but I love them. This is a new world. This is a new dawn. My wife asks me how my day was and I explain my frustrations but there is something to keep me here. My friends and my closeness to Bangkok. This is my life.


I am in London. I am walking along High Street, Kensington. I meet my wife and we go to the pub. Inside people are laughing and drinking and sitting around relaxed on this late August Friday afternoon. We laugh as we speak for hours about our lives and plans. We walk down a tree lined street where badge cars and young families jostle with tourists as shops and cafes sprawl into the arteries of London a warm breezy air encapsulating the whole scene. I will miss my life here. I know it. Deep down. This will be a chance that I will get again. One day.


I awake. I am in Bahrain. I fly to London in September. The dream is over.

wierd scenes

Saturday, June 12th, 2010

weird shit you see driving through the desert part one. Look at this fire, a ruptured pipe line or some such burning away some oil. Oil is like water out here so nobody gives a hoot so it’ll get repaired whenever or when it blows up. Whatever.

Something In The Air Tonight

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Today, Israel stormed an aid convoy and killed 19 people. Bahrain reacts by burning things as shown in this picture taken from my phone. Its really real in the field.

litter problem

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Normal countries have litter which consists of fag packets, dog shit and McDonald’s (or a combination of all three) whereas Bahrain has discarded motors on the roads and streets like London has chewing gum on pavements. Smashed up motors like the one shown are everywhere. Why? Because they are rich and they cannot drive is my guess. Knackers yard of a place metaphorically and literally.

A Question of Sport

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

The Middle East. Not noted for its sporting prowess in the arena of the any competition. Camel racing maybe. They can also kick a ball and run a bit but what are you going to do stuck out in the desert? There is fuck all to do when its so hot every day. If sitting in the shade and sleeping was an Olympic sport Bahrain would be drowning in a sea of gold medals alas the only sport being played here is the one of religious hypocrisy for which the rewards are much more tangible if a little more private. To be more precise Bahrain does have a crap football team (knocked out this years world cup by NZ), crap athletics team (Beijing winner stripped of medal for being a drug cheat) and crap racing car drivers but it looks like a new crap team is on the horizon – a crap cycling team. These guys are always blocking up the road on my drive home. All of them training hard at being crap and slow although part of me would love Bahrain to achieve something great just once. Surely all those prayers must count for something.

Road to Hell

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

This is the view driving to work at 7am in thick fog. Thick fog in Bahrain. Who would believe it.

Protected: Cycles

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

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Protected: The Gladiators

Sunday, October 18th, 2009

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Protected: Was it a Dream Come True?

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

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