“Hunting” for local culture has never been easier

Obviously we are living in a complete new culture that is a bit foreign to us, so when we get invitations to explore the local Qatari culture, we usually accept. Our most recent invitation was to see four teams return from the desert after hunting antelope, bustards and Karawan. These teams take part in a tournament called the Al Galayel.  The teams of 6 to 8 members, complete with salukis, camels and falcons, compete in 4 heats over 900 square kilometers in the southern desert of Qatar. After 4 days in the desert, they returned back to be greeted by their friends and families, and us! The tournament is actually televised as well, showing the rich heritage of Qataris, and the skills that they have being out in the desert.

We were invited by the American Women’s Association here in Qatar, and drove out to the border of Saudi Arabia to meet these teams. It was definitely a sight not to be missed. Enjoy the pictures! (Where apparently we were also being photographed and posted about!)

Banana Island

Based upon our previous moves, I moved to Doha with little to no expectations. After living in Scandinavia and reading Michael Booth’s book, The Almost Nearly Perfect People: Behind the Myth of the Scandinavian Utopia, I learned to lower my expectations. In his book, Booth suggested that perhaps the secret of the Danes’ happiness is because they have generally low expectations. I have applied this to my own life, and surprisingly I am happier when I have lower expectations. So, when I had the opportunity to go to the Banana Island Resort, I had absolutely no expectation. But in all honesty, I didn’t even know what it was. An island with many bananas?!

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