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On Qatari driving 4, June 2011

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Qatar.
Tags: , ,
11 comments

I realise that I am from the UK which has, statistically speaking, essentially the safest roads in the world, so my perspective may be somewhat conservatively skewed, but are the roads in Qatar not simply absurd? And do the locals not deserve the vast majority of the opprobrium for this?

Without fail every day when I’m driving around I see a Land Cruiser with a dishdasha at the wheel meandering around the road as the driver checks his phone.

Without fail every day when I’m driving around I see a Land Cruiser with a dishdasha at the wheel swerve through two or three lanes of traffic, undertaking and cutting up various other road users, accelerating aggressively only to invariably be stuck at the lights a bit further up the road.

Without fail every day when I’m driving around I see a Land Cruiser with a dishdasha at the wheel storm up behind me in my car (while I’m doing the speed limit) aggressively flashing his lights at me to move over. THE MOST INFURIATING part about this is that most of the time there’s traffic ahead of me so if I moved over, he’d still have nowhere to go. Nothing boils my blood more than this adolescent flashing behaviour. Routinely, I move back into the middle lane, as one should: I never just sit in the outside lane. If and when I get flashed now I simply slow down and resolutely refuse to move. I’m sorely tempted to get one of the flashing signs that the police in the UK have and say  ‘I would have moved at a suitable opportunity, but being as you flashed me to move over ## #### ########

Without fail every day when I’m driving around I see a Land Cruiser with a dishdasha at the wheel that cuts me up blatantly, egregiously and horrendously at a roundabout. For my own safety I use my horn to remind said driver that, well, I’m here and can’t dematerialise to nothingness. Three times this has led to the dishdasha driver quite literally and quite deliberately trying to swipe me off the road.

And without fail every day when I’m driving around I see a Land Cruiser with a dishdasha at the wheel, often with the wife in the front seat and children crawling around the car as if it were a jungle-gym. Why oh why oh why would you allow your children, your offspring, your darling babies, whom you love more than anything else in the world, to sit on your lap in the front seat or to wander around the car with no belts on? It boggles my mind. If or rather when – we are in Qatar after all – there is an accident then there is a good chance that your darling child would go through the windscreen like a spear, depositing chunks of their tiny, not-yet-hardened heads liberally around the vicinity. See this example from the Emirates.

Ma’aarifsh, as they say.

 

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