Sunday, February 05, 2012

An Average Qatari Weekend

It turns out by quirk or fate that I spent much of the weekend hanging out with various Qataris. I think sometimes Westerners believe that Qataris would lead these exotic lives and do “Arabic” things with their spare time, like falconry, camel riding, shooting infidels, plotting the demise of Western Civilization (just kidding!) so you might be surprised to learn that Qataris generally like to do the same things the Westerners do. So what does your average Qatari like to do on the weekend?

Thursday night: we hung out at a restaurant having coffee, grabbed a small bite to eat and went to the mall to catch a movie. Movie was full so we grabbed a late dinner at an Arabic café.

Friday: late in the afternoon met up with the guys at a pool hall and played snooker, then went over to someone's majlis and hung out there with a bunch of people. Some were playing Xbox, some were playing card games (primarily Brazilla), others were chatting. Had a meal there and left around midnight.

Saturday: met up with a couple of guys in the morning to play squash, afterward they went back to their respective homes to have lunch with their families. In the afternoon they watched TV, surfed the net, went shopping with the family and so forth.

While not exactly the gripping tale of comedy and woe that you normally get on this blog I think it's important to point out that in many ways Qataris enjoy similar activities that Westerners enjoy. I sometimes worry about the perception people have of Arabs because of how they are usually portrayed in media but in truth Qataris just like having fun with their friends or relaxing at home. Similar to the West.

Only without beer.


Susanne Fornasier said...

Hi Glen,
I just found your blog recently and I love it.
I enjoyed your current post because I always guessed that it is like that. Unfortunatly I haven't had these opportunities yet. Cherish these friendships.

Glen McKay said...

Thanks Susanne and welcome to the blog, glad you enjoyed the post. Yes, I really do appreciate my Qatari friends and it's great to get an idea of a different culture. That's part of the reason for the blog, so that others can get an idea about this country as well and hopefully challenge some stereotypes about Arabs.