Gulf News

My Letters – GULF NEWS – A readers travelogue

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Shaping the future of news – GULF NEWS initiative

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In the recent times, GULF NEWS has been coming out with a renewed vigor, innovation and initiatives each day. As I mentioned here earlier, Your Turn page and the Community reporter column is getting popular amongst it’s readers. It is an opportunity I marked to express my comments to any particular activitiy, which normally may go un-reported. It was also an opportunity I saw to evaluate my writing and photography skills. Each time, I send in an item of news or photo, I was sure, I am competing with numerous others within and outside the country and it gave me pleasure to see it in print, if ever it gets published and also consider more competitive approach for the next time, and look for minor errors which could have avoided an elimination.
I am sure that this opportunity will be happily grabbed with both the hands by many new readers in the coming days. I take this opportunity to congratulate the winners of February 2009:
1st – Mr. Saleh Yahya Farah
2nd – Mr. Vadasseril P. Abraham
3rd – Mr. Loic T
and all the other contributors for giving readers a chance to read the newspaper in their own language.
I also take this opportunity to congratulate the news editor Anupa Kurian and Deputy Editor Sanya Nayeem and an excellent team of members for bringing out beautiful prints each day with wonderful prominence for the news and presenters.
God Bless, and continue to sustain this good momentum all throughout.
Ramesh Menon
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Just one person can make a difference

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Just one person can make a difference

The on-going road development works and the parking worries give me occasional opportunities these days to travel by the Abu Dhabi Bus or Taxi during office hours and outside. I consider this as an opportunity to move away from my driving responsibilities and also from the crazy road behaviours for some time and opportunistically utilise the view and life around from a different angle and height. However, many times, these waiting, ends up in frustration looking at the senseless behaviour of fellow road users to rush in for the taxi or the bus, irrespective of others who have been waiting there before them. Like the situation in the movie Saveage Harvest, it reminds me of a predatory instinct in human being each time it happens. However, a chance drive to a city suburb in Ajman on a Friday afternoon made me realise it is not the case everywhere. I was waiting after a sumptuous lunch from a restaurant inside my car and noticed this act of decency by a group of ordinary passengers most of them labourers working in camps. As usual, my camera did not miss the opportunity of recording a series of precious acts and opportunity for me to promote TQM and Positive Thinking values around. Watching them, I thought, how good it be, if the same social conscience and sense prevailed with the fellow users in the more cosmopolitan cities like Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Immediately after the visit, I send the story to Gulf News for their new section Community Report, with a different version. Yeah, English is one language which we can manipulate according to our moods and swings. Thank you Gulf News for accepting it and continuing to allow me to test my writing skills. Together, it proves, You too can make Us create a world of difference.

The photos will tell you the complete story.

QUEUE PLEASE and Have a great week-end.

Ramesh Menon
05 03 2009

GULF NEWS Blogosphere – December 9

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Blogosphere: December 9
By Adam Flinter, Web Editor
Published: December 08, 2008, 23:33

Gulf News web editor Adam Flinter plunges headlong into the blogosphere to find out what bloggers from the Middle East and beyond have on their minds.

Wet and wonderful

It’s that time of year again. It’s becoming so regular that you can set your watch by it. When the Dubai International Rugby Sevens comes around at the end of November, it can only mean one thing: The winter has finally arrived and it’s going to rain.

Having some British blood coursing through my veins, the fixation with talking about the weather has a certain resonance with me. No matter how many global economic crises there are and how bad the traffic is, a few drops from the sky in the UAE and everyone is happy. After a long, dry summer, the effect the rain has is amazing.

Posting on the UAE Community Blog (uaecommunity.blogspot.com), Stained summed it all up, saying: “A wet winter. This is how I remember UAE from the 90s. I’m happy with this great beginning to this season, I hope it continues this way … my umbrellas have been in the closet too long…”

The Sandier Pastures blog (sandierpastures.com) even felt like dancing in the rain, but resisted long enough to post this entry. “Weather like this makes me realise that I am still living on Earth. My daughter used to ask me why there’s no rain, clouds in the sky or snow. We have the same weather 330 days of the year, which is a bit strange for her having grown up in Japan where we had experienced four different seasons. She even pulled out her jacket one day, the one we used when we left Japan during winter last year and said, ‘Mom, when will I use this again?'”

Now when the rain comes, pictures become as important as words in the blogosphere. And while it’s not the most exciting thing in the world to mention some good pictoral blogs, they are worth a visit.

The positive thinking Team One blog (team1uae.blogspot.com) had some great pictures and videos of the recent rains in the UAE. It also wins the award for longest post title of the week: “Just chill, chill, chill. It’s rain and thunder time in Abu Dhabi.”
Another one you’ll have to click on to appreciate, comes from Seabee (dubaithoughts.blogspot.com) who took a photo displaying the innovation that can be brought on by the rain. To give you some idea, here’s the opening line of the post: “There’s a lot of rain and nowhere to shelter. So find some old tyres, a couple of planks of wood, a sheet of blue plastic and you’ve got a great place to run to keep dry.”

Rivi, who has also taken some great pictures (lets face it, it is kind of a pictorial subject), also wrote: “On a rare rainy day in Dubai, I couldn’t help smiling at the way the trees seem to welcome the rain. Everything seems to be jumping in joy. Dancing all around!”

But it seems not everyone is happy to see the rain. Apart from people driving through the puddles, the global Madrasi blog (global-madrasi.blogspot.com) complained he could not sleep during the rain. “Through my glass window not protected by curtains, lightning flashed on my eyes around midnight. The rumbling thunder made me uneasy. Winter has returned to Sharjah. But what made me roll around restlessly on the bed was the growling in my stomach. I had been trying out a new restaurant for the past two days, and it proved a costly experiment.”

Ah! So it was food and not the rain that kept him awake!
As you were then. Everyone loves the rain (just as long as it isn’t in Bush visit proportions).


Thank you Gulf News