Sunday, June 25, 2006


Week Eight

Al-salaam alaykum,

Well Sunday was moving day. The move was absolute bedlam. We had our apartment packed up the day before, however 54 apartments of people were trying to move all of their stuff out of the old building and into the new one. To add to the fun, the new building didn’t have lifts that operated. As a result, everyone had to carry their stuff up several flights of stairs. This was difficult for some of the families as many of them had massive amounts of boxes etc. to move. The day was amazing. It took us several days to move everything across, as we had several priorities or the day.

After we finished moving it was of to Garvey’s to watch Brazil v Australia. There were probably around 20 of us watching the game along with the rest of the general patrons. It was a really great night, even though we lost. On a positive note, Melbourne beat Essendon by 36 points.

Over the next few nights we kept moving our stuff out of the old apartment and into the new one. It is amazing how much you acquire in the space of a month.

Work has been busy. The DAGOC Challenge has been on for the week at Aspire. Transport was one of the key functional areas involved, with all of the VTM’s involved in the challenge. Shifts were at the official hotels, the airport and at Aspire.

On Thursday night a few of our group did the final exam for our dive course. Thankfully we all passed. We now begin our skills side which includes both pool and ocean dives. I can’t wait. After the test went and watched Kabadi at Aspire. It is one of the weirdest sports I have ever watched. It’s a lot like primary school tiggy, except it’s played by adults. It is really weird.

The rest of the night was simply huge. Australia took on Croatia needing a draw or a win to get to the second round. Once again we were at Garvey’s for the game. The atmosphere was fantastic. Over here the game started at 10pm which was perfect timing as it was also the beginning of the weekend. There was a lot of abusing the referee and the Australian goal keeper. The way he was playing, we were wondering whether he played for the Sunbury seconds. It was a great finish. The rest of the night was fantastic. Bring on Italy!!!!

Friday was very much a day of relaxation. We went out for lunch at Turkey Central. The food there is great. Friday night we went to an Arabic restaurant called Layali. It was both a good bye dinner for Alex as she moved out of our apartment building and into a Villa with Rusty, and a welcome dinner for Rusty as he has just arrived in Doha. Sunday was pretty relaxing. I had around 4 kilo's of hair cut off my head. Otherwise a pretty relaxing weekend.

Take care everyone!!!


Week Seven

Al-salaam alaykum,

This was probably one of the most unimaginable weeks ever. We all went to work on Sunday as usual. When we arrived back to the apartment, we were met by three people from the accommodation team at DAGOC, only to be told that we had 2 hours to take our personal effects and some clothes and evacuate the building. From this point on we were accommodated in the Grand Regency, basically a 4 star refugee camp. We weren’t told much, other than to get out and that we weren’t allowed back until further notice. The first thought was a couple of days, however no one actually knew.

From here on speculation and rumours were everywhere. One of the staff went into the basement and found that concrete had exploded off the support columns and the rebar’s inside were all bent. Goodness knows what the others looked like. Many of us were wondering how long it was actually like it for. To this day no one knows the actual reason why we were moved out, although everyone has their own version thanks to all of the rumours.

The work week continued on as normal, instead DAGOC paid for three meals a day every day in the buffet restaurant, which mind you, was fantastic. Oh, and the slippers were very comfortable. On the Thursday, many of the single guys were given 2 hours notice that they had to check out of the hotel and move over to another set of apartments, where they will be housed for around a month, having to then move again once DAGOC finds somewhere for them to live. The girls, families and some of the males were then told that we had to check out on Sunday 18th June and move into our new apartments. Once again, everyone was split.

However there were some positive notes. Melbourne beat Collingwood by a very convincing 47 points, a great result, and then Australia beat Japan 3-1. That Monday was possibly one of the best sporting days in a very long time. Many of us went and watched it at Rydges in the Aussie Legends Bar. The atmosphere was great. The Aussie flags were being worn with pride and the chants were coming thick and fast, not to mention the pints!!! It was a fantastic day, then back to the 4 star refugee camp for a buffet dinner, not too bad at all. It’s good being able to make a positive out of a rather confusing and negative time.

I have now started my Open Water Divers Course with 8 other friends from work. It’s great fun. There is heaps of reading and lots to learn but its all really interesting. We are doing our first confined water dive (pool dive) next Wednesday which will be fantastic. The weekend wasn’t too busy. Went to a massive dance party at the Dip Club on the Thursday night which was a bit of fun. Friday was spent relaxing, going to the gym, sitting by the pool at the Marriot and generally taking it easy. A great way to spend a day of the weekend. Saturday spelt the beginning of breakfasts at a restaurant called ‘The One’. The food is great. It has been decided that we will go every Saturday morning. The rest of the day was spent packing up the apartment. I think the kitchen took the longest.

So there it is, one of the biggest weeks so far. We will be moving out of the 4 star refugee camp tomorrow (Sunday), ready to move into our new apartments.

This place is amazing. Only in Doha….

I hope everyone is well.


Week Six

Al-salaam alaykum,

Week 6 is up, and boy am I glad it’s over. Monday night was Jess Stein’s birthday which we had dinner at her place. There were around 30 of us. The food was fantastic. Tuesday night was Kate White’s birthday. We went to Tepanyaki at the Ramada. It was really nice, not as good as the one in Melbourne, but still really nice none the less. We were out for dinner on Wednesday night and Thursday it was the weekend again. We picked up our car on Wednesday. It’s a white Nissan Tiida. It’s one of the cheaper cars available but still very good.

Not much happened at work this week, still plugging away at the same old stuff. Rich is back this week which will be good. The pressure is starting to build and its getting busier which is great.

Believe it or nit, I have joined a gym. That’s right, the tubby fella is going to the gym each week. I joined the Marriot Hotel which has a pool, spa, sauna, gym, everything. It’s really nice, painful but nice.

The weekend was pretty mild compared to most of the others so far. Thursday night went to Rydges for a few quiet beers, took it easy. Thursday was my first day at the gym. It was a rather painful experience.

Friday I went to the gym again, that’s right, two days in a row. Afterwards I spent several hours relaxing by the pool, read my book and listened to some music. It was very relaxing. Friday night was the start to the World Cup. Many of us went to Rydges to watch the game. The night was really good.

On Saturday, myself and Louis went for breakfast at a restaurant at a place called Landmark. It was really nice. One annoying thing is that they don’t have bacon over here, so bacon and eggs is not available, damn it. The rest of the day was spent on the computer and watching the England v Paraguay match.

Anyway it’s just a short one this week, not much happened so there’s not much to tell.

I hope every one is well and enjoying themselves.

Thursday, June 08, 2006


A few photo's from "The Fishbowl" 'P' Party

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


A few photo's of the sun rise in the desert


Week Five

Al-salaam alaykum,

Week 5 is over. I must say this week has been fun. I went to a local supermarket called Mega Mart. The beef they sell is from Australia, and it tastes great. I cooked up Satay Beef and it was really nice. The meat was very tender. It costs about the same as it would at home. The next night enjoyed a chicken pasta, went down a treat. Unfortunately Melbourne lost to West Coast last weekend, therefore losing a bet, which is why the satay beef was cooked. Normally we would buy our meat at Carfoures, only problem is their meat department has been shut down due to health regulations. Always a positive I think.

Work has been getting busier. Rich and Leigh are both away (the other two VTM’s), leaving only myself and my regional manager. We have reached a couple of milestones which is good, many more to come.

About 20 of us from work went and watched a few comedians at Ramada last week which was great. They were hilarious. There will be a couple of new ones coming out in June which should be good.

Did a bit of shopping this week which was good. I bought a home theatre system, minus the TV, for the moment. It is fantastic. It is so loud. The surround sound is great. It cost me only 1,099qr, or around $400-. I love it. The sound is amazing. It plays DVD’s from every region, and it allows me to plug in my laptop, iriver or ipod in to it, you name it.

Had a massive party on the roof of our apartment building on Thursday night. It was the first party I have organized over here. It was great fun. We had around 100 people all up on the roof. It was themed as a ‘P’ party, with everyone dressing up in something beginning with the letter P. There were some great costumes, everything from police, to pirates, to prostitutes, to a pirate’s prostitute, there was even a pizza delivery boy. It was great. I went as plastic man. The costume was that hot it was crazy, then again, I was wearing plastic in 30 degree heat, which would explain it.

I sent an email to the people living in the apartment, asking if they were interested in contributing 50qr each to organize some rugs and stuff for up on the roof. I went down to the souqs (markets) and bought a whole heap of traditional cushions, rugs, mats etc for use up on the roof. They will be left in a room on the roof for anyone to use them if they want to. It’s a great place to sit, relax and have a beer, and the cushions make it even more comfortable. I will be organizing a BBQ to have up on the roof next, just working out the funds for it. It will be great once it is up there. It will be the greatest place to go and party or just relax.

Friday night was pretty low key. Had some dinner over at a friends, kicked back and watched some tennis, then went over to another friends and watched a movie. It was a very relaxing and enjoyable way to speng the evening. Saturday was spent lazing around on the couch, playing with the stereo settings to see how much louder I could make it, watched a couple of movies and took it easy. A very relaxing and fun weekend.

Hope everyone is well.

Saturday, June 03, 2006


The Camping Trip

The group, there were around 60 of us.

This was taken at The Inland Sea, overlooking Saudi Arabia.

Yes, a pink patrol. A possible purchase by Kaya???

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