On its way to China the Olympic Torch snaked its way through Muscat today – I parked my car just behind the roadblocks and joined the crowds.
Oman is the only Arab country where the torch will visit – therefore the government invited personalities from around the Arab world to share in the torch carrying.
The green stuff is very much the focus in Muscat at the moment.
Apart from the green dollars coming in from high oil prices the new Botanical Garden project is now under way and due for completion in 2010 – the same opening time that the new Continue reading “Fish and Flora in Oman”
It has been a week of contrasts with meals for me. In the rarefied atmosphere up on the 2000meter high plateau of Jabal Akhdar I took clients on a walk through the flowering Peach, Apricot and Almond gardens where fragile flowers bloom in a rugged landscape. We then enjoyed a wonderful lunch of rice and chicken in the home of a local family – the chicken, flavoured with spices was the most tasty chicken I had eaten in a long time .
Several hundred kilometres away near Masirah Island & 2000meters lower down from my mountain lunch I shared a night-time meal of rice and locally caught fish a few meters from the Arabian Sea. We joined local fisher folk for dinner by the light of an old lantern with the sound of the surf in a very atmospheric meal
The section of coast we enjoyed has a scattering of small fishing villages who use the beach or boat to travel from one to the other.
During the winter, the beaches are full of gulls snacking off discarded fish from the anglers’ nets. Other sea bird passing including chains of undulating cormorants as they flew from their roost to feeding grounds farther along the coast.
By way of contrast back in Muscat I was delighted to have a couple of dinners at The Chedi with Timothy Burrill just before his film ‘La vie en Rose’ won a couple of Oscars. With classic Italian food, a delightful restaurant and sparkling conversation from Timothy and Petra it rounded off a week of special meals.
It was great to be able to welcome the ‘Travel Management Team’ into Oman again with their corporate clients. After a non-stop flight into Muscat from London the 40 strong group arrived at Al Husn hotel, part of Shangri La’s Barr al Jissah Resort and Spa. We had organised a long weekend of rest and relaxation in Oman’s winter sun.
This week has not only been one celebrating the National Day of Oman but it has had a preponderance of glamorous mechanical equipment on the streets and skies. First off were Britain’s Red Arrows. They come to Oman on a regular basis and perform over the main beach in Muscat.
The Holy Month of Ramadhan is a time of abstinence and a period of great joy in Oman and throughout the Islamic world. Throughout the month the daylight fast is broken with ‘Iftar’ which for many men is a light meal eaten as a large gathering in the mosque
Though the cyclone & heavy rain in Oman during 2007 was a shock, it was extraordinary to then holiday in Britain during some of its worst flooding for many years. Fortunately, apart from a short visit to St Antony’s College in Oxford, I was well away from the flooding. This summer two similar collections of Islamic Art were exhibited in London Continue reading “Islamic Art in London”