Doha struck me as a city of contrasts. Tradition and modernization. Well, I am sure you will agree with me if you see a man in his long traditional white robe and keffiyeh (headscarf) ice skate. It was also a very young city judging from the construction activities going on when I was there. Yet, it is undeniably rich and trying its best to be mainstream. Around the time that I arrived, it just recently hosted the Asian games and has built a huge village to accommodate the athletes.
As Joel has been working in Doha for almost four years already, he knows the ins and outs of the city (Message me when you have something particular to ask, I will ask him about it.). We went to one of the souqs to buy lunch. I was surprised to find the owner speak to us in Tagalog, “isang ulam? dalawang ulam?” I was even more surprised to see the guy taking our food from the counter. He was stripped to the waist (it was hot in the kitchen) and looked so much like someone who works in a carinderia in the Philippines. And of course, he is Pinoy! Joel also took me to a hair salon as I needed a haircut (haircut in Norway is soooo expensive and so not worth it). And what do they have, the typical Pinoy parlorista! It was really fun and felt like being transported back to the parlors in Guadalupe Nuevo! Aside from hair cuts, hair straightening, they also offered body massages which as I have noticed was quite popular with the Qataris. It was funny though when they had a client which already proceeded to the cubicle to have his massage. The masseur suddenly came back and asked his colleague in Tagalog where the towel that he is supposed to use on the client is. His colleague got one of the dirty towels that he used for something else and told him, puede na to (this should do it). Hehe! No wonder Joel was so at home working in Qatar. I felt at home just visiting for a week. Here are some photos from Doha.