First UFO sighting in the Arab world was in Kuwait

Posted by Mark

This is something completely random I just fell upon but found really interesting. It seems there was a series of UFO sightings in Kuwait at the end of 1978 and it was supposedly the first time UFO’s were sighted in our region. Reports of the sightings were published in newspapers and even the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) got involved. Below are some quotes I got from various places but at the end of the post is a link with a lot more details.

Finally, the investigating committee established by the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research held a press conference on January 23, spurred on, they said, by the Arab Times photograph, to which “The committee attaches special importance….” They admitted that they were “groping in the dark,” and said they could neither confirm nor deny the appearance of UFOs over Kuwait. - The Muffon UFO Journal 1979

Some local wags have made light of the first UFO sightings which came near the end of the long and traditionally exuberant holiday celebrations of Eid-al-Adha. However we have learned recently of an event coincident with one of the UFO sightings which has confounded some of our most level-headed Kuwaiti friends, and may have been what persuaded the GOK to make a serious investigation of the matter. A senior Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) official told us the the “UFO” which first appeared over the northern oil fields seemingly did strange things to KOC’s automatic pumping equipment. This equipment is designed to shut itself down when there is some failure which may seriously damage the petroleum gathering and transmission system and it can only berestarted manually. At the time of the “UFO’s” appearance the pumping system automatically shut itself down and when the “UFO” vanished the system started itself up again. This event was not addressed by the KISR committee report - Message sent by the American Embassy in Kuwait City to the State Department in January 1979

I believe. Check out these two links for more [Link 1] [Link 2]


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Alnowair – iThank Campaign

Posted by Mark

Alnowair – iThank Campaign from al_nowair on Vimeo.

You can pick up the Alnowair #ithank post-its for free from select Caribou Coffee or the Alnowair booth at Marina Mall.


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Kuwaiti Business: Sebs Cheer Apparel

Posted by Mark

A few days ago I found out one of my friends (Abdulwahab Alansari) has the strangest/coolest/wtf/successful/creative local business which I thought would be amazing to share as an example of how local businesses don’t have to be all about cupcakes and burgers.

My friend manufactures cheer leading outfits in Kuwait for the UK market.

I thought he was pulling my leg at first but turns out it’s true. Back when he was in university in Liverpool he used to coach their gymnastics and cheerleading team and he was really good at it helping them go from an average team to a team that would come in first place in two out of the three annual competitions. Cheerleading kits in the UK were very over priced and of low quality so he did some research and decided to manufacture his own kits so he could help out his team. Ironically though, his team only placed an order for kits just 8 months back… after supplying over 5,000 kits over a period of 2 years to other universities and private clubs. In fact his small Kuwait based business now supplies 30-50% of UK universities and well over 30 private clubs. His clients include all the universities in Liverpool as well as the big ivy league unis in the UK like Oxford University.

Sebs Cheer Apparel don’t design outfits although they do help teams with elements of their design. Their main focus is manufacturing the outfits with the fabrics ordered from suppliers in LA, China and sometimes Kuwait. The outfits are all manufactured locally and then shipped to the various teams in the UK.

The name “Seb” was Wahabs alter ego and what most people in the “cheer world” knew him as. It’s that recognition that got him his first 10 clients since coaches and athletes he worked with respected him as an athlete and knew he would do a good job of getting efficient kits out. The business started off small with him supplying people he knew but soon word of mouth spread and more and more universities wanted to do business with him.

So there you have it, an interesting and successful small Kuwaiti business that doesn’t involve cupcakes. If you want to find out more about his business you can check out the following links:

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram


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Shakshooka Farmers Market

Posted by Mark

Over the weekend while in Lebanon I oddly found out about a farmers market located here in Kuwait called Shakshooka. I hadn’t heard of it before and the fact that someone living in Lebanon knew about it while I didn’t was a bit weird. I was planning to visit the next Shakshooka so I could write about it but turns out Danderma beat me to the punch since she posted a full write up on it on her blog earlier today. So check out her post [Here]

Photo above by @faisalthef


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New Store: Good Game

Posted by Mark

A friend of mine is opening up a very cool store next week called Good Game. The store will carry tabletop, board, war and card games like Warhammer 40,000, Magic: The Gathering, A Game of Thrones, Settlers of Catan and Lord of the Rings the Living Card Game. They also have space in case you want to play any of the games in the store as well as accessories like paint and various gaming components. The store which was designed by a very talented friend of mine (Nesef Al Nesef) looks ridiculously cool as well.

The store opens this coming Monday and will be located in Sanabil Tower (opposite Souq Sharq) on M2. Their phone number is 22397548 and you can also check them out on the following links:

Website
Facebook
Instagram


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Sidewalk Skiing’ New “Saudi Arabia” Sport

Posted by Mark

This would fit in perfectly with the Axe “Get a girl friend” advertising campaign. [YouTube]


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Kuwait Timelapse 1984-2012

Posted by Mark

It’s a project by Google, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), NASA and TIME. If you click the link at the end of this post you’ll be taken to an animation showing how Kuwait has progressed from 1984 up until 2012. You’ll mostly notice how more and more buildings got built but the roads basically stayed the same which is why we have so much traffic problems. Here is the [Link]


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Kuwait City Urban Development 2030

Posted by Mark

Gulf Consult in association with Atkins were engaged to develop a comprehensive detailed Local Plan for Kuwait City entitled ‘Kuwait City Urban Development 2030′. The Plan is to guide development for Kuwait City over the next 20 years to affirm its role as a national/international, financial/business and commercial centre.

Kuwait City is strategically located at the northern peak of the Metropolitan Area overlooking Kuwait Bay, surrounded by the sea to the north east and the 1st Ring Road to the south west. It covers an area of 1,200 hectares and is well connected to the rest of Kuwait through a series of arterial roads that transverse the 1st Ring Road.

The Local Plan proposes that the new development in the city be concentrated in four Action Areas: Sawaber; Mirqab West; Mirqab East and Qibla Commercial Area 1 and 2. The main development premise for these areas is to create mixed use sustainable developments which introduce new land uses into the city.

Also integral to the Plan is the integration of a Park and Open Space Strategy; Transport Strategy; and Utility upgrades and additions.

The Project was completed in six phases: Data Collection and Analysis; Detailed Planning and Traffic Studies; Planning Alternatives for Kuwait City; Detailed Local Plan; Detailed Zoning and Subdivision Plans; and Final Plans and Documents.

The area in question is around Al Tijaria Tower, opposite Al Shaheed Park. It’s currently occupied by old warehouses, an abandoned hospital, a grave yard, garages and tons of stores selling metal pots. The renderings look pretty but since this was just a study, we shouldn’t get our hopes up. More renderings and info [Here]


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Take a peek inside the VVIP Terminal

Posted by Mark

I’ve never seen the terminal up close but based on the photos it’s a lot bigger and nicer than I imagined it to be. I’m also surprised there aren’t even more photos online… or at least I couldn’t find any. Check out some photos of the terminal [Here]

Note: First photo from [Here]


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Discrimination against Kuwaitis in Kuwait

Posted by Mark

It’s pretty common to hear about expats being discriminated in Kuwait so it was interesting to read a post by yousefq8 who writes about how as a Kuwaiti he was being discriminated the whole time while apartment searching. It seems most of the places he was checking didn’t want to rent out to Kuwaitis and so he resorted to lying and talking in English to make things easier for himself. I have no idea why they would discriminate against a Kuwaiti, maybe expats don’t feel they can live comfortably when there is a Kuwaiti living next door? Not sure but you can read his post [Here]


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