UNESCO LISTS OMAN’S KHANJAR within its listing of craft skills and social practices as part of Intangible Heritage.

The Omani Khanjar has just been inscribed on UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritage list.

Khanjar & Mobile Phone
Khanjar & Mobile Phone

This traditional dagger, a Khanjar, is an important part of Continue readingUNESCO LISTS OMAN’S KHANJAR within its listing of craft skills and social practices as part of Intangible Heritage.

100th ANNIVERSARY OF TUTANKHAMUN’S TOMB’S DISCOVERY I cycled to see his tomb in Luxor - and wandered through the Museums in Cairo.

On 4 November 1922 in Egypt, a stone step that was cut into the rock was found, possibly by a young water carrier (the eventual account of the find is nebulous). The step was in the valley known 1,300 years ago as “The Great and Majestic Necropolis of the Millions of Years of the Pharaoh, Life, Strength, Health in The West of Waset“. The possible boy ‘may’ have been Hussein Abd El Rassul, or possibly Mohamed Gorgar (mentioned by Karl Kitchen). An Ahmed Gerigar was a ‘Rais’ – a foreman at the site. As Arabic transliterations often vary – the 2nd name may be the same in Arabic . Or was it actually a ‘water boy’ who found it – Carter wasnt even in the valley when the step was found. His excavation team had many years experence excavating the valley and would surely have found a hidden step rather than a chance find.

Seals on Tutankhamun's tomb door - by Harry Burton
Seals on Tutankhamun’s tomb door – by Harry Burton

This step was one of a series that led down Continue reading100th ANNIVERSARY OF TUTANKHAMUN’S TOMB’S DISCOVERY I cycled to see his tomb in Luxor – and wandered through the Museums in Cairo.

The Last Word for IASA my unexpected contribution to the International Association for the Study of Arabia

I am absolutely delighted that the International Association for the Study of Arabia (IASA https://iasarabia.org/) gave me the ‘last word’ in their 2022 Autumn Edition (number 29).

The Last Word - International Association for the Study of Arabia IASA Bulletin 2022
The Last Word – IASA Bulletin 2022

The IASA is a charitable organisation that exists to advance public knowledge of the Arabian Peninsula, through the promotion of research relating to its cultural and natural heritage. Continue readingThe Last Word for IASA my unexpected contribution to the International Association for the Study of Arabia

Procession of the Queen’s lying-in-state for Queen Elizabeth

I joined the crowds assembled to watch the procession of The Queen’s lying-in-state.

Capt Amy Cooper riding Lord Firebrand
Capt Amy Cooper riding Lord Firebrand

Opposite the Cabinet Office and Foreign Office in London, with an uninterrupted, privileged, view of the procession and sunny weather, it was a grand occasion. Continue readingProcession of the Queen’s lying-in-state for Queen Elizabeth

Oman’s new Ministers and senior Government Officials are appointed

Sultan Haitham bin Tariq has made a number of Ministerial and other important changes of personnel in Oman. (He also made changes in 2020)

Oman’s oil minister Continue reading “Oman’s new Ministers and senior Government Officials are appointed”

Jokha Alharthi’s latest book in English, the Bitter Orange Tree

Jokha Alharthi’s latest book in English, the Bitter Orange Tree, is another reflection, through the eyes of a protagonist, about several generations of an Omani family.

In the Bitter Orange Tree Zuhour, who is the protagonist, arrives in a snow covered British city to study. She slumps into a mournful reflection about a newly dead ‘grandmother, a miserable older sister and a depressed mother.

Zuhour lyrically remembers her grandmother’s scent of “civet musk, precious aloeswood oil, and ancient soil”.

Bitters Oranges Jokha AlHarthi
Bitters Oranges Jokha AlHarthi

As with Jokha Alharthi’s last Continue reading “Jokha Alharthi’s latest book in English, the Bitter Orange Tree”

Sultan Haitham to visit London

Sultan Haitham will visit London on 14 December.

Sultan Haitham Al Said

He will be accompanied by Sayyid Shihab bin Tariq Al Said, the Deputy Prime Minister for Defense Affairs, Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham Al Said, Minister of Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, General Sultan bin Mohammed Al Numani, Minister of the Royal Office, Sayyid Badr bin Hamad Albusaidi, Foreign Minister of Oman and Sheikh Abdulaziz bin Zaher Al Hinai, Oman’s ambassador to the United Kingdom.
This will be Sultan Haitham’s first visit to Great Britain as Sultan. His son, Sayyid Theyazin, was a diplomat at Oman’s UK embassy.

World Travel Market (WTM) London 2021 ExCeL London from November 1 to 3

This week London has been hosting the World Travel Market (WTM) at ExCeL London from November 1 to 3 . Incidentally ExCeL , owned by Abu Dhabi was a centre for overflow Covid hospitalisations in London.

Abu Dhabi at WTM London
Abu Dhabi at WTM London

The theme of the event was ‘reconnect, rebuild’ Continue readingWorld Travel Market (WTM) London 2021 ExCeL London from November 1 to 3

Oman ratifies the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications this protects brand names that are geographic in nature.

Oman ratifies the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications by by Royal Decree 19/2021 on February 15, 2021 .

Omani Halwa
Omani Halwa being made

This Geneva Act in itself is Continue readingOman ratifies the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications this protects brand names that are geographic in nature.