I work for a Danish engineering consultancy firm on a project by Govt. of Qatar in city of Doha. My team consists of a Pakistani team leader, a British Senior Engineer, a Draftsman from Phillipines and myself as an Engineer from India. The Project is headed by a Canadian Manager. Not just my office but this part of the world is full of people from different nationalities. This is a mini-world in itself.
After more than an year long stay at home, I got an opportunity to get out of the country and this one was much awaited. I was expecting it since few months but this opportunity knocked suddenly and the timing could not have been worse. It was a nice Tuesday and I had just began to adjust with the week with a mild viral fever. I was thinking of taking an off but little did I know that my boss is going to surprise me. I got an email from him that I have to leave for Doha office in Qatar as there is urgent requirement there for a project. By the evening, I came to know that I have to catch a Thursday early morning flight by Qatar Airways. I had one day to pack my bags for a 2-3 weeks stay and I had no clue what awaits for me there. Also, the mild viral fever got worse on Wednesday and I could not have even taken the day off because I had to deal with all the administrative paper work on the same day for my transfer to Doha.
After a long sleepless night and smooth 3-4 hrs flight, I reached my destination and set my feet on what the world call as the Middle East for the first time. It was hot as hell with dry hot winds blowing at my face. Soon I entered the terminal building to get cooled down by the air-conditioning. This is the standard way of living in most of the Middle East urban cities. All the buildings even the elevators, bathrooms, toilets everything is air-conditioned. On streets, people can be found taking a nap inside their cars (mostly SUVs) with Air-Conditioning turned on.
I reached the apartment that company booked for my stay and on my way I found wide roads with nicely designed medians with planted desert trees. I am a civil engineer by profession and so such things get my attention easily. It seems to be a well planned city as far as roads are concerned. The roads are another aspect of the middle east cities as they are full of rich people who love to drive expensive cars and so the one thing they really care about are the roads so that they can enjoy fast driving in their Porches, Ferrari and SUVs. Every day on my way to office, I get to see cars like Audi, Camry, Accord, BMW, Land Cruiser and 10 other parked. The level of car brands can be estimated by the fact that every taxi is a Camry here. The drivers here are mostly Indians, Bengladeshi, Pakistani, Filipinos.