Saturday, 16 February 2008

Doha contd

During the past few days we have had to visit our local hospital for some further tests to finalise our paperwork. We were sent to a new hospital on a new road nearby. The first thing we saw at the doorway to this large building were a couple of bellhops with golden trolleys, apparently there to collect luggage for patients. We entered the building to be greeted with a large waterfall in the centre of an even larger foyer. We looked up into the atrium to see the windows of the guest suites draped with plants and beautiful curtains. This was like no other hospital we had ever been in! At the entrance to the pathology unit was a fully uniformed man waiting to greet us and inside there was no waiting for service. We enquired about finding a specialist for later and were assured that we just needed to make an appointment whenever suited us. I will go back tomorrow to see a surgeon who will give me a referral to my next specialist and so it goes. This city is still amazing us. 
On the weekend we drove south to a beach to take a look outside of Doha. The road there was across a landscape like no other. Sand, dust, oil stacks burning into the air, more dust, fast cars and roadworks. Oh, and yes, a camel or two wandering around. 
We passed through an industrial town built we were guessing for oil exploration. It seemed very remote and very bleak to us, with more brand new purpose-built concrete buildings to house more workers. We finally arrived at the only beach resort in this part of Qatar(there are not many). As we neared the beaches there, we could see many, many little patches of businesses set up in the sand renting fourwheelers for people to ride off onto the sand dunes and out of sight! We saw many 4 wheel drive cars doing the same thing and wondered how safe it was out there with people zipping all over the place with no safety measures in sight. 
So my day was spent swimming in the cold Arabian Gulf, riding a camel along a busy beach, listening to the roar of motors riding the sand dunes and finally sipping tea around the pool of a rather luxurious but busy beach resort with the usual palm trees and grass. Perhaps we will go there again but I suspect not too often, unless it is early morning before all the noise begins. 

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