Journey to Al Rams

November 29th, 2009

The confluence of the UAE National Day and the Eid al Adha holidays prompted a gesture of generosity from Sheikh Nahyan, the Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology, and the Minister of Education for the UAE. We were granted a 10 day holiday starting a few days ago, which allowed us time to go exploring our new neighbourhood.

Just a few kilometers along the coast from us is the small fishing village of Al Rams. Emiratis are very patriotic and like to make giant flags such as the one below, which was the first thing we noticed as it was visible from the highway.

Journey to Al Rams
UAE flag over Al Rams Village
Journey to Al Rams
More flags

This picturesque area brings the mountains just to the water leaving only a narrow strip of land between. These harbours or creeks are surrounded by mangroves which provide breeding grounds for birds and for small fish, which in turn become food for larger fish, which these fishermen then put on our tables.

Journey to Al Rams
Al Rams Harbour or "Creek"

Journey to Al Rams
Al Rams Harbour or "Creek"

Journey to Al Rams
Al Rams Harbour or "Creek"

The local fishing net is more like a lobster or crab trap than a traditional net. There was a move to ban this type of net because it tends to catch anything that goes in causing a lot of secondary catch which is most likely thrown overboard.

Journey to Al Rams
Fishing nets

Eid, as with many holidays, is celebrated with family and food. Getting out ot the truck is family, in the back of the truck is the food. When the banquet arrives still standing on four feet, there is little doubt as to the freshness of the meat. There have been notices in the paper reminding people that animals may only be slaughtered in approved abbatoirs and slaughterhouses. People are not to slaughter any animals in their front yards or in the street in front of their house.

Journey to Al Rams
Sacrificial goat for Eid

A minaret is a familiar site in any village or city. The more the better!

Journey to Al Rams
Mosque

To increase our exploration capacity, we purchased a vehicle that we thought could handle the local terrain.

Journey to Al Rams
Our new car on the coast

Our new Nissan Pathfinder (well, almost new - 2008) should take us through any wadi in the mountains and well out into the desert to the best camping sites.

Journey to Al Rams
Nissan Pathfinder

She needs no introduction.

Journey to Al Rams
Annette in Al Rams

Location: Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates

We'll be at the Hilton...

November 21st, 2009

Just down the road from us is the lovely Hilton Beach and Spa Resort. We went along the other day for a look-see and discovered, much to our delight, a veritable paradise not even a 10 minute walk (or 2 minute drive) from our villa. Thinking of our future visitors, we thought we really should join the club and make sure we have thoroughly checked out all of the facilities.

We'll be at the Hilton...
Along the beach

How could we not join the club and spend out leisure time here, especially when the weather is like this?

We'll be at the Hilton...
The weather report

Coming on to the beach from the main resort building, we are greeted with this view of the beach stretching off into the distance.

We'll be at the Hilton...
The main beach
We'll be at the Hilton...
The main beach

Once you have walked the length of the beach and turn around, the view becomes even better with the resort looming in the distance.

We'll be at the Hilton...
Hilton Resort

 

For the more active, there is even a beach volleyball court.

We'll be at the Hilton...
Sean?

We will most likely spend a considerable amount of time here. If we are not answering our phone, try the hotel reception. Maybe they will come and find us on the beach.

Our villa is the lower point - the Hilton is the upper point.