Issue 16 - 21 June 2012
BBQ Like a Real Man coping with cooped-up kids
Women Working in a Manâ€™s World
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Letter from the Editor
10 FEATURE Euro 2012 is the talk of the town! Read our detailed guide and find out who to watch, when to watch them and who’s on course to take the trophy
Well, after a long, relaxing weekend we all headed back to the office feeling nice and refreshed and well and truly in the mood for summer.
11 Lifestyle With summer truly here, we look at creative ways to keep the kids entertained when they’re cooped up indoors
It seems that since Al Ain took the Etisalat Pro-League title a few weeks, ago the Garden City has gone a little football crazy. Attention has turned to the Euro 2012, where the crème de la crème of European soccer battle it out to get their hands on the coveted title. Read our Euro 2012 guide to keep you up to date with who’s who and give you some conversation starters if you’re heading out to catch any of the games.
12 STUFF for men Indulge your inner caveman with our BBQ tips 13 BUSINESS Branding your business 15 URBAN WOMAN Funk up your nails and show off your artistic side 16 AL MAJLIS Emirati composer Mohammed Al Shamsi talks to us about Khaliji music, composing and the inspiration behind his work 18 EDUCATION Exams are looming but don’t fret! We’ve got a few tips to help you get through them 20 DIARY 21 @ THE MOVIES 22 FROM OUR READERS 23 NEED TO KNOW 24 BE INSPIRED The first female graduates of UAEU’s Supply Chain Management Course talk about breaking boundaries 25 MY EMIRATE Tex-mex food at the Hilton Hotel 26 MY WORLD Bob takes his family organic farming in Norway
Music feeds the soul and that is certainly true in the case of Mohammed Al Shamsi, the Emirati composer featured in Al Majlis this week. We also talk to the first female graduates of UAEU’s Supply Chain Management Course about breaking into a male dominated industry. As the weather gets hotter (if that’s even possible!) we give you some great ideas to keep the kids entertained when they’re cooped up inside. In Stuff for Men, we have the lowdown on becoming a BBQ king while, in Urban Woman, we look at how to funk up your nails with some of this season’s latest trends. Exams are approaching and stress is on the rise so we’ve put together some tips to help you deal with exam anxiety without blowing a gasket. Finally, we have a My World with a difference as Bob takes his family on a fascinating organic farming trip to the forests of Norway. Oh, before I forget, check out our newly revamped website where you can link to our digital magazine, read all about us and even enter our fantastic competitions. As always, happy reading!
Hayley Skirka 27
Managing Director Mona Hennawi | Editor In Chief Mahra Saeed Al Muhairi Associate Editor Khudayja Saloojee | Junior Writer Mehak Alam Senior Graphic Designer Ghulmiyyah Ghulmiyyah Senior Arabic Editor Sami Rashid | Senior Translator Narmeen Al Assad | Translator/Associate Arabic Editor Hanadi Jamil Finance & Administration Manager Haneen Farid | Sales & Advertising Joe Mathew | Photographer Mohsin Salim | Distribution Manager Jeff Grigsby Contributing Writers | Sarah Stoll, Rawad Nasir, Bob Studholme Advertising firstname.lastname@example.org
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Police Clamp Down on Student Celebrations As the end of the school year approaches, Abu Dhabi Police have stepped up their traffic control in order to prevent risky vehicle demonstrations, organized by students celebrating the end of their exams. Previously, students have marked the end of the school year by showboating in their own, or their parents, vehicles. The campaign comes in light of the negative effects of such demonstrations which have included serious injuries, fatalities and damages to private vehicles. Al Ain Traffic and Patrols Division of the Traffic and Patrols Directorate at Abu Dhabi Police have announced a traffic plan that covers school students in Al Ain
up to the end of the school year. The plan includes providing patrols that will issue fines to violators. They are also working in collaboration with Al Ain Educational Zone and Abu Dhabi Education Council to inform the Investigation Branch at the Al Ain Traffic and Patrols Division in the case of any risky vehicle showboating. Major Mohammed Salem Al Ameri, Acting Head of Traffic Division in Al Ain, called upon parents to monitor their children and not to allow children who have not obtained driving licenses to drive vehicles. He also called upon those who have gained their license to adhere to traffic rules and regulations in order to prevent them hurting themselves or others.
Home Security Campaign Launched The Al Ain Police Directorate has launched a campaign under the theme ‘Secure Your House Before Traveling’ in partnership with Civil Defense and Community Police in Al Ain. Brigadier Hamad Ajlan Al Amimi, Director of Al Ain Police Directorate, said the objective of the initiative is to spread awareness among people who want to go on vacation and to stress the importance of securing their homes, which may be vulnerable to theft, fire, or damage during their absence. He advised homeowners not to keep valuables, such as jewelry and money, at home. He further added that police stations in Al Ain will increase their patrols and community personnel during the summer months. Members of the public are urged to work as a community and report suspicious activity in their neighborhoods.
UAE troupe attends Rio Summit In a high level delegation led by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, officials from Masdar and the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE) have joined more than 100,000 officials attending the Rio+20 Summit in Rio de Janeiro on 20-22 June. Top foreign and environmental delegates from the UAE have showcased the country’s leading projects on environmental sustainability ranging from solar power and carbon capture, to green cities and alternative energy. The Rio+20 Summit, formally known as the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, is focused on the future of sustainability, the green economy and finding a new course to create a sustainable planet. According to Gulf News, UN organizers commented ahead of the summit that,
The ‘Secure Your House’ campaign also includes several activities and events such as awareness lectures in expat communities and in private and public entities. It is organized in cooperation with civil defense departments and includes the distribution of awareness brochures in coordination with community police in Al Ain Police Directorate.
“a lot has been achieved in the past two decades from putting the health of the ozone layer back on track in order to spare the Earth from the sun’s deadly ultraviolet rays to meeting the povertyrelated Millennium Development goal on access to safe water. But the fact is that a lot remains to be done; it’s at best a work in progress.” Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of the DSCE said “The participation of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy with the official UAE delegation in the Rio+20 Earth Summit and its accompanying exhibition falls in line with the ‘Green Economy For Sustainable Development’ initiative announced by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, aiming to build a green economy in the UAE.” thesourceuae.com
NEWS The late Crown Prince Nayef is buried near Hara’m Mosque in Mecca
Cyber Criminals Target Children School students and children are vulnerable targets for cyber criminals and hackers. Criminals interact with children online in order to extract sensitive information about families. According to Gulf News, a senior cyber security official at Dubai Police said that the Cyber Crimes Investigations Department has recently received several complaints of criminals targeting children through online games.
characters lurking about freely online. Many children and especially teens have no idea how today’s actions have the ability to impact the rest of their lives.” Mr Hajeri also advised parents against banking online or storing sensitive information on computers that are used by their children.
Major Saeed Mohammad Al Hajeri, Director of Cyber Crimes Investigations Department in Dubai Police reiterated, “Cyber attack through online games is a genuine threat. We have had a few complaints in the last few months, where computers were infected through games and all the sensitive data was lost.”
UAE Express Condolences to Saudi The UAE’s President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, expressed his condolences to Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz on the death of Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz who died on Saturday morning. The 79-year old’s body was met at King Khaled Airport by a troupe of Saudi Princes after it was returned from Geneva, where the former heir to the throne had been residing at his brother’s home. Cited cause of death was ‘cardiac problems’ after receiving treatment for a knee complaint. He was buried in Al Adl cemetery near the Grand Mosque in Mecca. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, also sent his condolences, expressing his profound sorrow and solace to and the Saudi people. Condolences from across the globe poured in with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon commending Crown Prince Nayef’s dedication to his country as Interior Minister and US President Barack Obama praising his cooperation in the fight against terror. In light of the Crown Prince’s death, a group of Saudi female activists have cancelled a planned day of action protesting against the country’s ban on women drivers, in the country to show their respect of the late Interior Minister. 8
Parents are urged to strictly monitor and guide their children when they are using the internet. Aji Joseph, General Manager of ESET Middle East, which is one of the leading internet security providers said, “Parents should monitor their children’s internet usage so that they can protect their children from predators and immoral
UAE’s Maritime Pavilion at SOUTH KOREAN Expo A crowd of thousands of spectators gathered outside the Expo 2012 at Yeosu in South Korea to view the UAE’s maritime themed pavilion, which entertained attendees with traditional Emirati shows. The pavilion, centered around the theme ‘the living ocean and coast’, illustrates the Yeosu expo as a whole. The pavilion highlights the UAE’s maritime history and efforts to preserve its long coasts and enunciates key events in the UAE’s 41year history. According to Gulf News, Reem Al Hashemi, UAE’s Minister of State, attended the flag hoisting ceremony and associated the pavilion with the successful history of the UAE in managing and developing marine environments. She believes that participation at such international levels will provide a better insight for the younger generations and assist them in committing their efforts to conservation and
development of the marine environment in their country. Al Hashemi further explained the importance of such an event that is an opportunity to showcase the country’s heritage and achievements in marinerelated areas to the whole world. In addition to that, it is a platform for the country to share the experiences of the UAE for the preservation of coastal environments in a rapidly developing setting. The expo aims to raise awareness of marine and ocean life worldwide and, with four fifths of the planet’s surface being water, the necessity for this is compelling. The UAE have formally launched a bid to host the 2020 Expo in Dubai, an event that would boost tourism and demonstrate the country’s belief in multiculturalism and the benefits of shared experiences, knowledge and skills.
Boxing Bout in Dubai Adnan Akilles from Sweden won the final of Destiny in the Desert II, held last weekend at the Dubai World Trade Centre, defeating Iran’s Mehdi Ramezani to take the title. This win has put Adnan just a step away from winning the overall regional title at the IBL 70 Kg Middle East, which will take place next year. In the women’s category, it was Dubai based fighter Kerry Bennett who won the Ladies Thai Full Rules contest against Abu Dhabi-based Milena Martinou. Swedish fighter Mikaela Lauren succeeded in her quest to participate in the IBA light middleweight world title in Dubai next year, after defeating Thai opponent Pimnipa Tanawatpipat.
Dubai-based Iranian fighter, Abbas Tiger, defeated Dom Nielsen from France, in the first round of the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Bout. Though Nielsen fought fiercely, a leg injury allowed the Iranian take charge. Scoot Rogan, who dropped 10kgs for the contest, lost against Iranian Reza Cachuee in their May Thai bout. Although Rogan fought back fiercely during the third round, Cachuee secured his win in the fourth and final round. All in all, Destiny in the Desert II proved to be one of the most successful boxing events held in the region, with international fighters vying for the title and turning in some impressive performances.
UAE CRICKET CHAMPS The third Gulf Cup Cricket Tournament, held at Sharjah Cricket Stadium last weekend, saw the UAE national team retaining the title after beating Oman by four wickets in the finals. The four-nation tournament, aimed at promoting cricket among Arab nationals hailing from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and the UAE, witnessed tremendous team efforts. Oman, who won the inaugural edition of the event in 2010, won the toss and started off batting. Their opening batsmen, Khalid Moosa and Mohsin Gul Baig showed great partnership and scored 51 runs. However, their departure from the pitch proved unlucky for the team as Oman subsequently lost a series of five wickets, one after the other, with the addition of merely eight runs on the score board. Despite this, a solid effort from the whole team gave Oman a decent score of 137 for seven wickets to see them finish a close second. The UAE took only 19.3 overs to beat the Omani’s score and grab first place in the tournament. Qais Farooq impressed with an inning of 45 runs from 40 balls, that contained seven fours and one six. Meanwhile Captain Mohamed Tauqir scored 21 runs from 21 balls.
Arab Cup kicks off sans UAE The ninth edition of the Arab Nations Cup; Arab Football Cup 2012, will be held in Taif, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from 22 June-6 July. Unfortunately, supporters in the UAE won’t get to enjoy seeing their team in action as they have withdrawn from the tournament. The reason cited was the non-availability of key players. A number of players were unavailable for the pre-tournament conditioning camp in Turkey, leaving Coach Abdullah Misfir with an incomplete team. The Senior National Team are short of Ismail Matar, goalkeeper Ali Khusaif, leftback Abdulla Moosa and winger Ismail Al Hammadi who are busy preparing to represent the country at the London Olympics in the summer. On top of this, the AFC U-22 Championship
in the UAE kept a number of younger players from joining the national squad for the Arab Cup.
The man of the match title was taken by Qais Farooq from the UAE, with teammates Salman Farooq and Saeed Al Saffar emerging as noted strong bowlers. Third position in the tournament went to Saudi Arabia, who defeated Kuwait by 44-runs, scoring 136 for eight. Kuwait however, put up a good fight, gaining 92 runs to finish a respectable fourth.
“We regret to reach this decision,” stated Obaid Al Shamsi, Vice president of the Football Association in the UAE. He continued, “We had to come to this conclusion after consultation with our technical committee. We couldn’t assemble a strong squad due to reasons beyond our control…We also don’t have time to prepare for a big competition; when we play in such an event, we must field a team to play honorably.” The Arab Cup continues as normal with eleven teams from Africa and Asia set for action. This is an edited version of a story that originally appeared in The National newspaper on 31 May, 2012. For the full version, please go to www.thenational.ae
Football Fever! By Hayley Skirka
These past few weeks seem to have been all about football! Firstly, Al Ain took the UAE Pro-League and now everyone seems to be obsessed with the Euro 2012. The tournament is well underway, with the finest of Europe’s soccer elite descending upon Poland and Ukraine to see who will come out on top this year. Restaurants, cafes and bars across the emirates are hosting various football related events where you can go, watch the matches and take part in some football fun. If you’re not much of a soccer nut then you might find yourself a little bit clueless establishing who plays for whom and who is playing who! Don’t worry; The Source is here to help! Giving you some important info about each of the teams left in the tournament, bear in mind we’ve reached the quarter finals stage already, and the upcoming fixture schedule, you can rest assured you’ll be at the top of your game for the rest of the tournament.
Greece Currently ranked 14th in the world, the Greek team came in second in their qualifying group to go through to the next stages. Having shocked nations by winning the cup in 2004, the team struggled to find their form until Fernando Santos took over as manager in 2010. Now they are certainly one to watch. Czech Republic The Czechs finished top of Group A to qualify for the quarter finals. Never having won the cup before, but crowned runners up back in 1996, they’ll be relying on the strength of experienced captain and Chelsea keeper Petr Chech to help them go far.
fixtures QUARTER FINALS 1: Thursday 21st June Czech Republic VS Portugal 2: Friday 22nd June Germany VS Greece
Germany Ranked number 2 in the world, the Germans predictably qualified top of Group B. Having taken the title three times previously, they are one of the favorites to grab it again this year. Completely undefeated in the qualifying stages, Captain Philipp Lahm hopes to steer his team towards glory.
3: Saturday 23rd June SPAIN VS RUNNERS UP GrpD
Portugal With the hugely talented, if exasperatingly cocky, Cristiano Ronaldo on side, the Portuguese team is sure to be able to net at least a few goals over the course of the tournament. With Group B being the toughest group in the competition, Portugal may have already faced and won some of their toughest challenges, perhaps leaving them with an easier test in the quarter finals.
1: Wednesday 27th June Winners QF1 VS Winners QF3
Spain The world’s top ranked team is favorite to win this year with their fantastic football-ing tactics and stunning soccer skills. The team is practically the same as the one who bagged 2010’s World Cup in South Africa so it’s no surprise they’ve reached the quarter finals.
4: Sunday 24th June ITALY VS WINNER GrpD
2: Thursday 28th June Winners QF2 VS Winners QF4
Friday 1st July Winners SF1 VS Winners SF2
Italy The Italians are ranked 12th in the world and previously won the Euro title, all be it all the way back in 1968. Manager Cesare Prandelli has ushered in a young squad, talented yet not without their troubles. They’re sure to put in a good fight in the quarter final stages. GROUP D As we go to print, there’s a lot still to play for in Group D with only Sweden having crashed out after their exhilarating defeat against England. Ukraine has never previously qualified for the competition but could be the dark horse whereas England and France are both seasoned pros and could go far.
Where to Catch the Action
Check out the action at the Rotana Hotel, who will be screening the matches on the big screen in Moodz while offering great deals on refreshments and snacks. Or head to Danat’s Horse and Jockey, who will be hosting a huge pre-final party on July 1st with the chance to win a trip to Germany! 10
Cooped up with the Kids this Summer? As the weather heats up and the schools wind down, it’s almost time to start the annual indoor hibernation! However, being cooped up indoors with small children can turn into a nightmare if you’re not well prepared. How on earth do you keep your little ones entertained? To help you out, we’ve put together a few ideas that will keep them happy, without costing the earth. How about a toddler train to encourage your kids to tidy up their toys. They’ll have a lot of fun filling up each car with their toys and pulling the train behind them wherever they go.
First up, make your own play dough... Play dough is a classic childhood toy that everyone can have fun with and, the best part is, it’s super easy to make at home. Basic ingredients: 2 cups flour 2 cups warm water 1 cup salt 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 tablespoon cream of tartar (optional for improved elasticity) food coloring (optional) Mix all of the ingredients together, and stir over a low heat. The dough will begin to thicken until it resembles mashed potatoes. When the dough pulls away from the sides and clumps in the center, keep stirring and cooking until it becomes dry and feels like play dough. Remove the pan from heat and allow the dough to cool. IMPORTANT NOTE: if your play dough is still sticky, you simply need to cook it longer! Turn the dough out onto a clean counter or silicone mat, and knead vigorously until it becomes silky-smooth. Divide into balls for coloring. Make a hole in the centre of the ball, add a couple of drops of food coloring then fold the dough over, working the food color through the rest of the play dough, use gloves or plastic wrap to keep your hands clean. That’s it, now it’s ready to play with! And it’s entirely edible, if a bit salty, so it’s kid-safe. When you’re finished playing, store your play dough in an air-tight container. If it begins to dry out, just kneed a bit of water through it to soften the dough back to usability. However, once it gets to a certain level of dryness, you’ll have to throw it away and make a fresh batch.
Materials • 3 or more assorted boxes • String, ribbon, or yarn • Plastic straws • Scissors Directions • Use scissors to poke small holes in the ends of each box. • Insert about half a meter of string, ribbon, or yarn into the back hole of the first box and then tie the end of the string around a short piece of plastic straw to prevent it from pulling through the hole. • Insert the other end of string through the front hole of the next box and fasten it in the same way. Continue connecting the boxes until the train is finished. • Use a longer length of string for the front hole of the first box. • Tie a wooden block to the end of this string to make a handle. Rain sticks are a fun craft that kids can make to imitate the rain, certainly something we don’t see very much of in this country. Materials • Paper towel tube • Crayons/paint • Tinfoil • Masking tape • Dry rice • Long pipe cleaners Directions • Have your child color and decorate the paper towel tube. • Fasten tinfoil to one end with masking tape. • Coil the pipe cleaner and fit it into the tube, along with the rice. • Secure the other end of the tube with tinfoil and tape. Your child’s rain stick is now ready to make soothing rain sounds!
Cooped up inside, kids are likely to have a lot of excess energy. Here’s a few ideas to help you get rid of some of it.
Help release some of that pent up energy with some vigorous boogying. Dancing around the house will bring you and your kids closer together and is great exercise for you too. Turn on the tunes and get ready to strut your stuff. This fun, physical activity is sure to lead to a calm evening afterwards.
Hide & Seek
Hide and seek is a simple game loved by kids everywhere. When they’re stuck inside on hot sunny days, they can use the entire house as their playground. They won’t be too difficult to find-just follow their giggles to lead you to their hiding spot.
Sarah Stoll - Bsc (Hons) Community Nursing Specialist Practitioner, RSCN, Dip.He. is an Independent Parenting Advisor, British qualified pediatric nurse and health visitor offering support for all aspects of parenting. For further information email - firstname.lastname@example.org or call 050 135 2684 thesourceuae.com
STUFF for men
BBQ Like a Real Man
By Hayley Skirka
Men and BBQ’s. There’s some kind of unique bond there, some unwritten code that says ‘real men can BBQ’. Personally, I think it goes back to the cavemen days; something about cooking, fire, and meat evoking a primeval instinct inside all guys. Whatever the reason, being able to BBQ will separate you from the regular guys on the block and heck, may even impress the ladies! If you’re a bit of a beginner, have a few practice runs with the missus or a mate before inviting the whole street over. Don’t be afraid to give it a go, as William Shakespeare said “It is better to have burnt and lost, than never to have barbecued at all.” Here’s a couple of BBQ pointers to make sure you’re meat is tasty, satisfying and commands respect. Choose your meat wisely Choosing a good piece of meat is crucial in astounding those around you with your awesome BBQ skills. Try a few different cuts to see what works for you; maybe a tender fillet, a flavorsome ribeye or a juicy T-bone. And remember, freshness is fundamental! Let the flavor come through Think of it like this. No matter how much make-up you put on a less-than-attractive woman, at the end of the day, she’s still under par. Same goes for your meat, meaning if it’s a good piece to begin with, all you should need is a little oil, some coarse salt and a bit of ground pepper, none of your fancy marinades. Keep it simple. Turn up the heat You want to get your grill as hot as you possibly can. The more chars you get on that steak, the more flavor you lock in. Just keep an eye out that you don’t burn your expensive prime cut to a crisp.
Check it out, subtly Sure, you need to keep an eye on how it’s cooking, but don’t play around with it too much. Know how thick your steak is and how long it should take to cook and then leave it alone. Flip it once, and give it a quarter turn on each side, making sure you put it down in a different spot each time to use the hottest part of the grill. Give it a rest Once you’ve put your perfected BBQ skills to the test, take the cut off the grill and let it breathe. If you cut into it straight away, you’ll see the delicious juices run all over your plate and the steak you’re left with will be drier than a desert highway. Letting it sit for five minutes eliminates this, leaving you with a nice, big, juicy steak to tuck into. Lastly, dig in and spare a thought for all your veggie friends!
Branding: your key to success By Khudayja Saloojee
Early branding of any startup company, no matter what size, is imperative to business success. It is the fastest way for you to define your company and what it can offer. Incorrect branding of a new business can make it difficult for people to fully grasp the concept of your business and why it exists. Generally, in most startups and small medium enterprises, branding takes a backseat to other considerations such as product development or funding. Don’t be mistaken, a company’s brand is essential to its success. Dirham for dirham it’s as important and pertinent as any other early steps.
What is branding? Branding is not only about your company’s logo but is the face your company puts on to face the world. It’s a promise about a company’s products, quality, services, initiatives and trust. A great name creates intrigue, conjures up images of a savvy business or a company with class and it also tells customers a lot about who you are. When you start thinking about the branding process, think of a name that will truly encapsulate your business. A brand requires an image or logo. Envision an image that works well with that name. Finally, contrive an innovative byline, which is a short sentence that describes who you are or what you stand for. One of the most successfully branded companies in the world is Apple. The Apple logo is clean, elegant, and easily recognizable. Initially the logo was colored with rainbow stripes, to make it more accessible and to show the work Apple could do with color. Now, however, Apple’s new generation is symbolized by a glass themed apple. This smart branding allows a company to communicate a change in direction while still continuing to build its reputation.
Why is branding important? Your brand is your corporate identity. Your name and logo should tell people who have never heard of your business something about you. Your brand should be so powerful it should be able to convey a message or a feeling instantly. When you advertise in media, be it newspapers, magazines or on the web, potential clients may have very limited information to work with, perhaps only your address, website, phone number and logo. If your logo looks professional and your byline is creative, it alone
could be the reason someone decides to use your business or visit your establishment. When you develop your identity, it is vital that you first of all identify your niche market and ensure that your brand speaks to these groups. For example, if your business is located in the vicinity of many colleges or universities, your branding should appeal to students as they will probably be your main source of income. If your business is located in the city or in an area where there are office blocks, your branding should aim to attract business people. If you’re in a small suburban shopping mall, your branding should be aimed at attracting mothers, shoppers and the area’s residents.
Defining your brand Defining your brand can be difficult and time consuming. However, it is like a journey of business self-discovery and it requires, at the very least, that you answer the questions below: • • • •
What’s your company’s mission? What features and benefits do your products or services offer? What do your existing customers and prospects already think about your company? What qualities do you want people to associate with your company?
Always do your research. Find out the needs, habits and desires of your current and existing customers. It’s vital that you accurately know ‘what they think’ rather than relying on ‘what you think they think.’ Once you’ve defined your brand you need to let people know about it. Here are a few tips to help you do this successfully. • • •
Get a sharp logo - place it everywhere Write down your brand messaging - this should be the key message you want to communicate to people. Every employee should also be aware of your brand attributes. Merge your brand - branding should not be exclusive to only one aspect of your business, it should extend to every aspect such as how you answer your phones, what your salespeople wear, your email signature, etc. Design an innovative byline - don’t underestimate the importance of your byline. It should be concise, memorable and meaningful. It should encapsulate the essence of your brand. Create brand standards for your marketing materials - be consistent with color scheme and logo placement. Be true to your brand - both yourself and your employees need to deliver on your brand promise otherwise customers won’t return and nor will you benefit from word of mouth referrals.
If you’re a new establishment, it might be a good idea to consider hiring a professional to assist you in your branding program and remember, branding is a truly important part of your overall marketing program. thesourceuae.com
Get Funky with Nail Art By Mehak Alam
Are you looking for a fun way to finish off your look? Trying to jazz up an outfit that is otherwise a bit mundane? Why not have a go at nail art? While very detailed nail art is probably best left to professionals, the simpler techniques can be done at home. With a little practice, and a lot of patience, you can create eye-catching designs perfect for brightening up your nails and finishing off any outfit with a flourish. First of all, you have to make sure your nails are in good shape. A nail massage every other week will have a huge impact on the health of your nails, enhancing both their growth and appearance. Stop biting! Nail biting destroys the growth of your nails and can cause permanent damage! If you’ve tried to stop and can’t, paint on some anti-bite polish, this foul tasting stuff will help remind you to stop whenever your nail ends up heading for your mouth. Shape your nails carefully with a nail file, making sure you file only in one direction. Apply pertroleum jelly or cuticle oil to your cuticles but avoid trimming them as this can leave you open to infections. Great, now that your nails are looking good, you can begin the fun part and get arty! Firstly, you’ll have to get some nail polish. There’s a multitude of colors, textures and finishes out there so keep your eyes peeled whenever you’re shopping and pick up the ones that catch your eye. For adding detail, you can use acrylic craft paints, which work
out a lot cheaper than nail polish. Once you have your polish ready, you need to get hold of a professional nail kit, which can be used over and over again. Failing this, grab a toothpick or a bobby pin to help you apply dots and swirls. Thin paintbrushes are also essential. Have some acetone and cotton balls beside you to clear up any mishaps before they dry. When selecting a design, don’t try to overcrowd your nails with details. Keep it simple and it will not only look better, but will be easier to apply! Anything too busy will clash with your outfit. Secondly, apply a base coat to your nails. This will protect the nail and keep the surface smooth. Next, add whatever color you want to make up the main aspect of the design. Use the nail kit or dip the bobby pin in the polish to draw fine lines or swirls across each nail. Use stick-on gems to create flowers and opt for nail stickers or stencils on top of a funky base color for more detailed images. Another great way to add fun to your nails is to paint the base in a bright color, for example ‘cocktail orange’ and then do the tip in a fuchsia pink: voila: a modern twist on a French classic. Have fun, experiment and let your personality shine through! Once your happy with your nail art, let it dry and then paint over with a clear acrylic top coat. This will protect both your nail and your artwork. You can reapply this clear top coat every second day to keep your nails shiny. Finally, don’t forget to apply cuticle oil everyday so that your nails are in good condition for your next nail masterpiece. thesourceuae.com
A Young Man
With a Dream By Rawad Nassir
Emirati composer Mohammed Al Shamsi is a young man with a dream. That dream is to deliver his country’s melodies to the whole world. Fondly nicknamed ‘Almuwadea’, he has composed both romantic and nationalistic songs for a unique group of Khaliji singers. He was one of the first Emirati composers of patriotic melodies, composing some of his first pieces for the operettas Edifice of Civilization, Mother of The Nation, Yes, this Is Our Civilization and The Country Of Peace. Since he was a child, Mohammed was fascinated by the arts. He participated in many cultural events and throughout his school years gradually developed his talent. He always had a natural gift for composing and it was something that seemed to come easy to him. Indeed, to help him when it came to studying, he would turn poems and homework assignments into composed pieces, which his brain would remember much more easily than text. He engaged in music and drama at school and discovered that, although he was fond of singing, composing was his true calling. His first public performance came about when he was only twelve years old. He nervously took to the stage to play the lute at the Junior High Graduation Ceremony. He has never looked back 16
since. In order to fine tune his musical talent he has learnt from melodic masters and attended many musical institutions. Mohammed works best in the early morning. He loves to compose as the sun is rising and his mind and imagination are free to wander. His biggest influences are the iconic composers Riad Al Sunbati and Abbad Al Johar. Mohammed learned to play many instruments, but found that he could best express himself with the lute. His senses and emotions could be truly captured with this instrument. He explains that a person should not hold the lute but instead embrace it and, perhaps, this is why it is the instrument that he holds closest to his heart. Mr. Al Shamsi, was also responsible for the founding of the ‘Takaseem for Art Production and Distribution’ company in Al Ain. This studio was the first professional, fully equipped studio in the city. Today, the company has progressed in leaps and bounds and now extends its activities to broadcasting TV shows, organizing press conferences, seminars and workshops. It has gained an
excellent local reputation and people have come to regard the company as synonymous with excellent service, fast production and punctual submission. Mohammed’s aim, with this company, was to support artistic talent in Al Ain and to promote the work of nationals to the same level and quality of international talent. Talking about the reality of Arabian music today, Mohammed elucidates, “It’s deteriorating and repetitive. It focuses more on the beat than the musical phase and lacks sensation and taste. It needs beautiful lyrics and good music in order to transcend to a higher level.” He further explains that directors use fancy locations and video settings to appeal to a teenage audience and that this strips away the true meaning of the song. “I think currently there’s no song, but instead merely repetition and imitation of the West.” He goes onto point out that today, we watch a huge volume of music videos each of which has a short lifespan. None of them survive like old songs from previous generations. Furthermore, many of these videos are not aimed at the audience as a whole, but to a specific person, and this shuns the feelings of other listeners. He puts it plainly. “Art needs intelligence, the artist that looks at profit is not an artist. An artist has to be musically educated, have a beautiful voice and know how to choose appropriate music and lyrics for their voice. There are renowned artists who have wonderful voices yet, some of them, are unfortunate in choosing the proper music and lyrics and there are others who simply repeat the same songs and music.” A successful composer must know the range of a vocalist’s voice and who he or she can offer music to. They also must feel and sense emotions; much like a poet translates their emotions through words. Composers, who can successfully imitate this process and pair these feelings with appropriate music, are the ones who
will find success. The most important task for a composer is to choose a fitting voice for the music, so that the message of both the poet and composer can be conveyed. Mohammed Al Shamsi’s last song was ‘The Country of Peace’ which was performed at the celebrations of the UAE’s 40th National Day. Currently, he is working on composing scores for the operettas ‘Manufacturing People’ which was written by poet Rayana Al Oud and ‘Honor of Homelands’ written by Aaref Omar. He is also working on a special project, dedicated to those with special needs. Entitled ‘Disabled’ the piece features renowned vocalist Aseel Abu Bakr and Hana Moatasim.
LIFELESSONS Art can be a vehicle through which you can convey messages. It is considered as a front for the community and the country and is a place where you can convey the love and honor that you feel for your country. Quality over quantity: It is better to produce a single, successful and memorable work of art than to produce a huge volume of clumsy pieces. Consultation is a good thing; we should commit to it, especially in the artistic medium. Artists must not stick solely to their own opinion but must work with other professionals and take time to consider all opinions. Avoid arrogance as it is the end of creativity. All you need to succeed is hard work and determination.
nature’s way of making you wish we still lived in caves? By Bob Studholme
For students, the end of the year brings rising temperatures, the promise of holidays and exams. Only one of those is good news. The other two you can be forgiven for thinking of in the same way you do gravity, only there to get you down! Exams are a problem. More so, they are an important problem. Bad results can have an effect on the future. They can also have some pretty immediate effects on the present. Teachers are rolling their eyes and giving you the ‘could do better’ line. Parents are promising to throw the computer out of the window and ban you from Facebook and Twitter. Friends are sniggering. But don’t despair. Every problem has a range of solutions. So let’s look at some of the things you can do to deal with exams and the stress that they produce. First Up - Revise. One of the most important things to remember is to keep some perspective. A bad mark is really not the end of the world, but worrying that it might be is exactly what overloads your brain and stops you thinking clearly. Limit info. Don’t try and learn it all at one time. If you can spread out the revision and build in time to repeat and repeat again, then you stand a much better chance of recalling this info in the exam. Trying to stay up the night before with a huge amount of coffee to do it all in one go is a disaster not even waiting to happen. It’s already happening while you’re doing it. Similarly, don’t spend time revising things you already know. Work out the parts that are difficult and concentrate on them. How to know what to focus on? You can use your friends or family. Working together can help make sense of things, as can attempting to explain a subject to a patient relative, who can look in the book while you talk. Remember that working with friends can offer you some much needed support and reassure you that you’re not the only one worrying! 18
Make notes. Write that idea down now! And share these notes with friends. You can try putting sticky notes around the house in places where you’ll see them; think bathroom mirror, fridge, side of the cereal box. This might sound silly, but silly can be one of the better ways to go when it come to revision. Lighten Up. A lot of studies have shown that things are difficult to remember not just because they are hard to understand, but because they aren’t particularly fun to think about. Try to incorporate some ‘fun’ into your studies. You might not feel that you’re up to making puns on Pythagoras’ Theorem, but drawing cartoons, reading Horrible Histories, or just trying to make light of the subject might be the way to make a fact more memorable. The trick is to give the memory something to make it more memorable. If you can run it through your head a few times, you will probably remember it and if it is fun to run through your head then you’re more likely to do so. To keep things light you could also try recording yourself reading one of your textbooks and then listen to it on your way to school. No, it isn’t as good as Green Day and you probably can’t hum along, but it’s a great revision aid. You could try making up a mnemonic, eg. Richard of York Gave Battle in Vein = the colours of the spectrum, or create stories to help you visualise information. Often it is the effort of trying to do this, and getting your imagination involved, that makes something stick in your mind. Get flashy. Flash Cards with key points on them are a great idea. You can summarize important points and carry them around much easier than you can a library full of school books. Using colours, symbols and drawings can make the important facts stand out. Many people are visual learners and remember what they see much more than what they hear. If they can make the thing they look at more interesting, it will allow their brain to process information much easier. Also, about 50 per cent of the work is done in just making the notes, as of course you have to think while you write.
EDUCATION Move it. Something which might sound a bit strange is the idea of revising while moving. At the moment we only have anecdotal evidence to support this but many people say that revising while walking around helps them remember more. It may be partly that your brain is excited by the stimulation, or it might be that mild exercise causes better blood-flow to the brain. Either way, its worth a shot. Test yourself. Write out notes as questions and write the answers someplace else. Give yourself a pat on the back every time you get one right. Work with a friend and you’re actually practicing thinking about the subject in the same way as your teacher or examiner might, giving you an insight into what types of questions may arise. You can also use the internet to help you with this, sites like the BBC’s Bitesize, have lots of tests, games and quizzes to help you revise. Don’t Stress. Easier said than done of course but, hopefully these study techniques will have relieved a little of that stress
monster. On top of that, simply be realistic. Put a big note on your door saying exactly how much you plan to revise today. That way, your mum will (maybe) get off your back about it. When you’ve done what you said you would, take a break. You’ve done enough and you need some time for you. Don’t worry; Mum will be there to hound you if she thinks it isn’t adequate. Get exercising. Not getting exercise can lead to restless nights which result in fatigue and a lack of motivation to study. Also, try to make sure you get enough sleep. “Oh, I stayed up till 2am revising last night” might sound good, but it probably explains why you look like a panda and are writing with the wrong end of the pen! Chill! You’ve worked hard and are probably going to do well. Remind yourself what you have achieved in the past week, such as knowing the answers to all of the questions you got wrong on the last test. Stop stressing and make time to go out and have a laugh. Everything will be okay!
If you fancy some sporting action this summer then head to Abu Dhabi’s Sports Festival to try your hand at football, cricket, basketball, running or even chess! With loads more activities also on offer it’s an energetic way to spend the day. INFO: 21 June-19 July, 10am-10pm, ADNEC For more info see www.adnec.ae If you fancy pushing yourself to the limit, why not sign up for the Dubai Desert Road Run Summer Scorcher? Taking place at the Sevens Stadium on the Al Ain - Dubai Highway, runners of all abilities are invited to take part in this 10km two-lap course. Registration is open now! INFO: 23 June, 7am, The Sevens Stadium Register online at www.premiermarathons.com
Dining! Feeling romantic? Head to the Ayla Hotel for a dreamy candlelit dinner. Feast on delicious dishes from the international buffet and enjoy the ambience set by the live Oud musician. INFO: Every Tuesday, 7:30pm Do you like lobster? Trader Vic’s is having a week-long promotion on these scrumptious crustaceans. With succulent lobster cooked to perfection in the traditional French style and finished off with a flamboyant burst of flame, it’s a treat not to be missed.
INFO: 21-27 June, Al Ain Rotana
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FILM OF THE WEEK
Rock of Ages, directed by Adam Shankman, famously known for Broadway musical ‘Hairpsray’ has kept the jokey tone of Chris D’Arienzo’s Broadway musical. Set in 1987 Los Angeles, ‘Rock of Ages’ tells the story of small town girl Sherrie (Julianne Hough) who arrives in LA with big dreams. She falls in love with Drew (Diego Boneta) a fellow bartender at the Bourbon Club on the Sunset Strip. Their rock ‘n’ roll romance is told through the heart-pounding hits of DEF Leppard, Joan Jett, Journey, Foreigner and Bon Jovi to name a few, setting the scene for a rock and roll storyline.
Movie Listings GRAND BAWADI, BAWADI MALL Tel: +971 3 784 0300 1.
OSCAR CINEMA, AL FOAH MALL Tel: +971 3 784 3535 1.
ROCK OF AGES: 10:00, 12:20, 14:40, 17:00, 19:20, 21:40, 24:00 2. ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER (3D): 10:40, 12:50, 15:00, 17:10, 19:20, 21:30, 23:40 3. MADAGASCAR 3: 11:30, 13:30, 15:30, 17:30, 19:30, 21:30, 23:30 4. ASMAA (ARABIC): 12:15, 14:15, 16:15, 18:15, 20:15, 22:15, 24:15 5. ATM: 11:00, 12:50, 14:40, 16:30, 18:20, 20:10, 22:00, 23:50
ROTANA HOTEL, ZAYED IBN SULTAN St. Tel: +971 3 754 4447 1. ABE LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER (3D): 10:50, 13:00, 15:10, 17:20, 19:30, 21:40, 23:50 2. ROCK OF AGES: 10:00, 12:20, 14:40, 17:00, 19:20, 21:40, 24:00 3. MADAGASCAR 3: 11:30, 13:30, 15:30, 17:30, 19:30, 21:30, 23:30 4. SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNSTMAN: 12:30, 19:00 4. ASMAA (ARABIC): 15:00, 17:00, 21:30, 23:30
ROCK OF AGES: 10:00, 12:20, 2:40, 17:00, 19:20, 21:40, 24:00 2. ABE LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER (3D): 11:00, 13:10, 15:20, 17:30, 19:40, 21:50, 24:00 3. ATM: 10:00, 12:00, 14:00, 16:00, 18:00, 20:00, 22:00, 24:00 4. MADAGASCAR: 11:30, 13:30, 15:30, 17:30, 21:30, 23:30 5. TERI MERI KHANAI (HINDI): 11:00, 13:30, 16:00, 18:30, 23:00 6. SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN: 12:30, 15:00, 17:30 6. ASMAA (ARABIC): 20:00, 22:00, 24:00 7. EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE (Filipino): 18:00, 20:00, 22:00, 24:00 7. MOONRISE KINGDOM: 10:00, 12:00, 14:00, 16:00 GRAND CLASS: ABE LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER: 12:00, 14:10, 16:20, 18:30, 20:40, 23:00
GRAND AL AIN CINEPLEX, AL AIN MALL Tel: +971 3 751 1228 1. ABE LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER (3D): 10:50, 13:00, 15:10, 17:20, 19:30, 21:40, 23:50 2. ROCK OF AGES: 10:00, 12:20, 14:40, 17:00, 19:20, 21:40, 24:00 3. MADAGASCAR 3: 11:30, 13:30, 15:30, 17:30, 19:30, 21:30, 23:30 4. SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNSTMAN: 12:30, 19:00 4. ASMAA (ARABIC): 15:00, 17:00, 21:30, 23:30
The movie listings are valid from Thursday to Wednesday every week.
FROM OUR READERS
By Midori Yoshino
COMPETITION Wouldn’t your life be much simpler if you didn’t have to worry about shaving, plucking or waxing unwanted hair? There’s no better feeling than stroking your hands across your perfectly smooth baby soft skin! The name Silkor is a play on words combining the English “Silk” with the French “Corps” (body). This encapsulates the Silkor mission - to provide the smoothest, most soothing and least intrusive luxury laser medico-aesthetic and skin care treatments. This ‘new you’ could be a reality as Silkor, who aim to provide ways to help are offering you the chance to win advanced laser technology in a bid to provide the perfect solution to your hair removal needs. Silkor also offers a wide array of medical and aesthetic services supervised by highly skilled dermatologists and a range of laser treatments. Schedule a free consultation by logging onto www.silkor.com, popping into one of six locations across the emirates or call Silkor Al Ain on 03 763 0123 or enter our competition to win one of three AED 400 gift vouchers towards laser hair removal. To win with Silkor and The Source simply answer the following question:
Which of the following is a Silkor Service? 1. 2. 3. 4.
Laser Hair Removal Facial Treatments Slimming Treatments All of the above
Send your answers to email@example.com and don’t forget to include your contact details.
PRAYER TIMES Day
CIVIL DEFENCE 997
TAXI SERVICE 600 535353
AL AIN DISTRIBUTION CO. 800 9008
HAVE A QUESTION WE HAVE THE ANSWER ASK THE SOURCE
NEED TO KNOW
Is there a badminton court in Al Ain that women can use? Even better, is there a badminton club that we could join? Although tennis and squash seem to be the more popular racquet sports in Al Ain, we’ve came up with a few places where women can enjoy a game of badminton. Give them a call for more information with regards to booking the courts and join the Al Ain Badminton Group on Facebook for up to the minute information. Al Ain Equestrian, Shooting and Golf Club - 03 768 4888 Danat Al Ain resort - 03 704 6000 Indian Social center - 03 722 1080 Tawam Hospital - 03 767 7444
Plastic is not fantastic! Approximately 90 per cent of the total trash dumped into oceans is plastic and, unlike other trash, this is is one material that is not biodegradable. It’s also unusually toxic and, when it enters the ocean environment breaks up and acts as tiny magnets which attract all types of pollutants which expel harmful chemicals. A thick layer of microscopic plastic dust on the sea floor accumulates more debris and destroys marine life on a massive
ENVIRONMENTAL scale. Over 100000 marine mammals and one million seabirds die each year from ingesting or becoming entangled in plastic. Camels too are at risk with almost one in every two camels dying from eating plastic bags. For a plastic bag to finally degrade it would take over 1000 years! So, even if we completely stopped using them today, the damaging effects will be around for a whole lot longer.
What can we do?
In order to help reduce the nasty environmental effects of plastic we can all… • • • • •
Try to re-use plastic bags and other products as much as possible. Always look out for ways to recycle plastic materials. Opt for bio-degradable products over plastic products. Re-use plastic crockery as pots for planting small plants and herbs around your house. Avoid dumping any plastic bags into the ocean or in the wild as that’s one sure way to destroy nature’s wildlife.
Defying Traditions By Khudayja Saloojee
Throughout the history of the UAE, women have been an integral part Shamma Saif Al Darmaki of society. When men left for months to work in the pearling and fishing industries, it was women who held down the fort and assumed responsibility for both the family’s agricultural needs and for raising the children. There has, however, been a reluctance to allow these competent women to excel in certain fields, not just in the Emirates but worldwide. Think of engineering, mechanics and even business to a certain extent and you immediately think of men. Fortunately, this is beginning to change and we recently met with six accomplished female students from the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) who are part of this change. These goal-driven women have challenged the gender stereotype and actively pursued a career in a male dominated field, accomplishing their goals by becoming the first women to graduate the university’s Supply Management Chain (SCM) course. Chatting with the students, we were keen to find out why they chose to tread a career path so infrequently trodden by females. They tell us that, actually, it wasn’t their initial choice. The Principle of Supply Chain Management course is a pre-requirement for all business students. Fatema Al Hosani enthusiastically explains that she wasn’t really thinking about the course as a major but, after signing up, she didn’t regret the decision. “It’s something new, something we should learn.” Their lecturer Dr. Saeed Abdulla was one of the major motivating factors behind their choosing SCM as a major. His innovative teaching methods and open-door policy made the course material fun and less daunting. Haya Taha praises her lecturer and adds “He made it as easy as possible and really co-operated with us. If we had any questions, he used to give us extra classes and, for the finals, gave us a full review session. It made it easier for us and interesting to study.” While women face barriers to enter the profession they also face cultural or environmental hurdles. These ladies have great tenacity and high aspirations. A career in SCM is demanding and requires working in an office environment dominated by men and possibly involves travel. Interestingly enough, the students’ parents were supportive of their daughter’s decisions, with the exception of Noura Al Nuaimi. Noura explained the initial objections she faced from her father. “It was a challenge. My father said you can take engineering but don’t take business and economics. It’s a field for men and when you graduate you will be in an environment that’s full of men working around you.” Her supportive brothers pleaded on her behalf and, after much persuasion, her father finally relented. Thinking about the SCM course, we were keen to find out exactly what it entails. How many of us have actually given any thought to the process behind products ending up on supermarket shelves? The students began to explain how a product is part of a whole chain of events of which we, as the consumer, are the final part. Asma Al Shamisi says,“it’s all about a product’s lifecycle.” The lifecycle of the product begins with sourcing raw materials for the manufacturer and, once the product is manufactured, it has to then be taken to the distribution center or warehouse. It is then transported to the retailers, and finally to the consumer. Haya 24
puts it in a nutshell, “It’s making the product without even touching it, and overseeing the whole process without even being involved in the manufacturing itself.”
Haya Jihad Taha
The course has many elements to it but the women gave us a brief overview. They highly recommended it but also told us how challenging they found the mathematics component. Formulas are used in calculating, forecasting and inventory and Asma reiterates the difficulties “we have to use our brain and think about which formula you need to use.” Fatema, with a glint in her eye, tells me “It’s fine with me.” She points out that SCM is not focused solely on mathematics but “it’s management in general.” UAEU gave the students the opportunity to gain practical experience by sending them on three month internships at various companies and institutions, such as UAEU’s Male Campus, Al Ain Hospital, Strata, Al Ain Distribution Company and UAEU’s Entrepreneurship Innovation Center. Asma tells us about her internship at Strata which was strategically planned by the company’s Director, Ali Darwish. In the first month, she spent her time in the General Procurement department where she was responsible for contacting travel agencies, finding suitable quotations and booking flights for employees. In the second month, she worked in logistics and then, finally, in Aerospace procurement. “I worked in a program called SAP ERP system where you have to record all the information about each part or material and which vendor or supplier we have to order from.” She delightedly told us that Strata have now offered her full-time employment. Ecstatically talking about graduation and being among the first five females to graduate, Haya smiles and tells us, “It makes us special because when someone asks what’s my major, I tell them SCM. They ask why? It’s so difficult!” These determined women have taken a bold step and embarked on a new career journey. There collective advice for all aspiring female students is “if you love something you will do it even if it’s difficult.”
A Piece of the Puzzle By Ghulmiyyah Ghulmiyyah
Ever since the Hilton Hotel ﬁrst opened its doors, a piece of the Al Ain puzzle that appeals to expats fell into place. That piece is called Pacos.
Allow me to introduce to you the gang that holds Pacos together: beginning with the main man, Ronald - Assistant Manager, who ensures everything is under control on a daily basis. Happy Ramzee, the Supervisor, knows how to put a smile on your face after a hard days work. Rog and Rosita, the Captains, and they seriously are Captains! Last, but not least, April, Kateryna and Regalado are the people that will keep your tables laden and keep you happy and coming back for more. Without all of them, there would be no Pacos!
Granted, it’s not a typical Al Ain hangout but the good food, great company, exceptional service and fantastic character certainly make it a special one. The menu has a wide selection of delicious Tex-Mex foods coupled with a choice selection of beverages. It is well-equipped with TVs for the sports fanatics and a band-set where talented musicians perform most nights. Throughout the week, you’ll find the regulars hanging out on the terrace, soaking up the sun while the hotel’s business guests grab a bite to eat and discuss their daily schedules. At the weekend, Pacos gets busy as the socialites of the city descend upon the venue to enjoy the atmosphere, mingle with friends and do some rocking and rolling to the blaring sounds of the band. So, what is the secret behind Pacos and what keeps its customers coming back for more? Personally, I have been to many similar spots, both in the UAE and abroad. However, Pacos seems to keep its guests for ten, twenty or even thirty years! You can arrive in shorts and flip-flops or a suit and tie, either way you’ll be welcomed by some amazing staff and friendly service and therein lies the secret.
L Shape Sofa w/Storage (Black, Brown & Red)
Sofa Bed 3+2+1(Red, Grey, Black, Brown)
king Size Bed (Black & Brown)
Leather Sofa Set 3+2+1
Annie Bunk Bed
in Norway By Bob Studholme
MY WORLD Hard at work
Henriette. WWOOF-ing is fairly new to Norway and Vemond and Henriette are slightly famous in the organic movement. They have a small campsite near their farm with unique shelters modeled on designs first used by the Saami people or those indigenous of Sweden, Norway and Finland. Later, we joined them for the first birthday celebrations of their son, Einar Egil. We spent about three weeks with them and had a wonderful time. Mostly, it has to be said, because they are such great people. There was work – we cleaned up a barn, built a set of Chinese raised beds for gardening, painted the new extension to the house, weeded, picked berries and mushrooms in the forest, helped with the cooking and our daughter, Aki, was kept busy with a lot of baby-sitting and dog walking. But we also had time to go for walks, take photographs, make all sorts of pies from berries, listen to Kjell strumming on his guitar, drink Vemond’s home brewed (and prize-winning) malt in the tavern he built himself and make wood-fired pizza. When friends of the family came over from the UK for a visit, we had nine people around the table and Vemond made nine pizzas, including an incredible nettle leaf pizza!
No, not doing dog impersonations. The WWOOF started in Britain quite a few years ago, where it originally stood for ‘Working Weekends on Organic Farms’. Now, many years later, the organization has gone international and their acronym now stands for World-Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms.
Towards the end of the trip the weather got a little cold but it was September and we were in the mountains of Norway so it was to be expected. The week before we had seen temperatures in the 30s so we couldn’t complain. It was mushroom season and the forests were also full of chanterelles. Kjell, of course, knew all of the right places to gather them and we came back from our mushrooming trips with shopping bags of the sort of quantities that would cost almost a months’ salary in the UAE.
My family wanted to do something different for the summer, meet and get to know people somewhere in the world rather than just ticking off pages from Lonely Planet guide book. After living in the Middle East for a while we were also keen to see some greenery. Thus, what better option than to visit some of these organic farms? We joined the association, had a look at the list of farms and opted for one that was happy to have kids coming along.
Just before we left, Henriette dried a huge quantity of forest pickings for us to bring back. This made for a fantastic dinner party back in Al Ain when we served our friends wild mushroom soup with some of those tasty chanterelles. The guests were politely envious that we’d picked them ourselves until they tasted the soup. After that they became extremely envious, knowing that we’d had three weeks of gorging on such delights.
Norway. I don’t ascribe to the idea that Oslo is for people who weren’t born stylish enough to be accepted by Stockholm, though I understand why some say that. On a wet day, and there were lots of them, Oslo reminded me of my native Newcastle in the UK. On a good day however, it’s a place of brilliant sunshine, high blue skies, great cafés and some incredible art. Take, for instance, the Vigelund Sculpture Park. It might come as a shock to some, it certainly did to me, that the sculptures are all nudes! The park was opened in the 1920s but the people portrayed are timeless and of all ages; their sadness or joy depicting humans as they were, are, and will forever be.
Our time in Norway was so fantastic that we decided to keep on WWOOF-ing. Vemond and Henriette were typical hosts of the association, down-to-earth and altogether lovely and we’ve found the same thing whenever we’ve tried somewhere new. Whether it was Martii in Finland, Jonas and Sanna in Sweden, Ton and Renee in Holland, Morag, Bruce and Leontine or Alex, Carina, Laragh and Rory in Ireland, all hosted us graciously and helped us build memories to rival the mushrooms of Norway.
WWOOF-ing in Norway!
A trip to the Folk Museum was a really nice way to spend the afternoon. This collection of traditional Norwegian buildings is staffed by people who demonstrate the traditional crafts of the country, and they do so in perfect English. It might not sound all that amazing, but our eleven-year-old daughter was fascinated by the experience realizing that these were real places that real people had lived in. The demonstrations of cooking over open fires, dancing and playing music in the squares, and weaving cloth in a farmhouse were a million miles away from her normal Al Ain life. It was also a good introduction, for the whole family, as to what was to come next. We clambered aboard a bus and travelled north to Elverum, where we were picked up and driven an hour into the Finskogen, or Finnish Forest, so called because of the Finns who were invited to come and settle there by the king of Norway a few hundred years ago. We were chauffeured by Kjell, a warden in the forest and an expert on everything that lived and moved there, who took us swiftly to the home of our hosts for the week, Vemond and
Aki enjoying the great outdoors in Finskogen
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