2 Weeks, 2 Crutches

Posted by Mark

xray

So it’s been two weeks since my surgery and since I started using crutches. The first week of crutches was fun because it was something I hadn’t experienced before, and so there was lots of puzzle solving involved. But that novelty quickly wore off and I’m now finding crutches to be such a nuisance. One thing I haven’t really solved is how I can carry stuff while on crutches. I went to Sultan and bought some bananas thinking I could carry the bag in one hand while still managing to hold my crutches. That worked but what I didn’t take into consideration was the weight of the bananas plus the swinging motion would completely destabilize my balance with every swing. The stupid bananas were going to cause my crutches to fly out of my hand and I’d fall embarrassingly in front of everyone. Stupid bananas. I ended up taking the most gentlest and shortest hops back to my car and finally got there like 15 minutes later. A messenger bag would do the trick but imagine if I walked around with a messenger bag at Sultan filling it up with stuff. It would look like I’m stealing groceries so that’s not gonna happen.

On the other hand I have gotten very close to my crutches. They’re my mobility so they’re always right next to me. When I was at a restaurant last week the waiter was being nice and took and put my crutches near a wall away from my table as so not to bother me, I had him bring them back because I didn’t feel comfortable being so far away from them. People are so nice to you when you’re on crutches but it’s the pity kind of nice which I dislike. I have complete strangers passing by me and telling me “salamat” (get well soon) or “mat shoof shar” (don’t see evil). I’ve broken both of my hands multiple of times but no one ever treated me differently. It’s these damn crutches, not sure how I can make them look any less medical, I already have some cool stickers on them. When I see someone in crutches or in a wheel chair I don’t treat them any differently than I would anybody else because I know they don’t want my pity. I guess I understand, people are just trying to be nice but still, it makes me feel weak.

arcusairwalker

Yesterday I had my stitches removed and had some new x-rays taken. The doctor said I still have two more weeks in my cast before I completely remove it. It’s not really a cast, I removed the cast around 10 days back and got this medical boot called the Arcus Air Walker instead. It looks super cool, a lot less medical looking than a cast and best of all I can remove it and put it on myself. Made cleaning my wound (and leg) so much easier plus it’s the only way I can put on my skinny shorts. By the way if you ever need anything like this, crutches, braces, or things to make life for someone with a disability easier, there is a pharmacy in Kuwait Building Tower in Kuwait City (same building as Spaloon and Burger King) that has the whole basement floor dedicated to this stuff. I got my boots, crutches and a shower bag for leg from there, they’re called AlHuwail Pharmacy.

So anyway my doctor told me I don’t have to wear the cast anymore as long as I don’t put much weight on it yet. Since I’m super clumsy we agreed I wear the boot when I am moving around on my crutches but I can remove it when I’m sitting down. That was energizing news since I kinda had gotten demoralized a few days earlier. One of my clients is an ex Chinese Olympic gymnast and he told me that back in the day when any athlete broke a bone they had to be in a cast for three months. That obviously brought me down since I had hoped I would have to stay in the cast for a maximum of 6 weeks.

compex

The best news the doctor gave me is that I should start doing home rehab on my ankle, moving it around and such which is exactly what I wanted to hear. I have a little experiment I am planning to run you see, I noticed that in just two weeks my left calf muscle had completely weakend. That means even after I remove the cast I wouldn’t be able to walk normally or do normal things not unless my left leg got its strength back. So I had a theory, what if I did Electro Muscular Training starting from now? I tried it last month with the fitness studio 20Seven and it gave me a proper workout and my theory is it would keep my calf active and alive until I remove my cast. So I went online, did some research and ended up ordering the Compex SP 4.0. It’s one of the best and most popular brands for home EMT devices and use by crossfitters, cyclists and other athletes. I’m planning to work out my left leg, specifically my calves and ankles during this period in hopes that by the time I remove the cast my left leg would be stronger than if I hadn’t done EMT. I’m curious to see if it works. I’ll do a full review of the device in a month or so.

So two more weeks and if everything goes to plan no more crutches.


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New Restaurant: Bao – Steamed Bun

Posted by Mark

bao1

Last night a new restaurant opened up in Kuwait City called Bao that serves Chinese-style steamed buns (hence the name). Whenever a new restaurant opens up that brings something new to Kuwait I’m usually all over it which was the case here. I’ve had steamed buns before in Kuwait at Street by Al Makan, but to have a place that just focuses on them, even better.

The restaurant is cute looking with around 7 or 8 tables. They had just opened last night so there were only a few other tables occupied when I passed by. I looked at the menu and ended up ordering the following dishes:

Tamarind Drumstick KD2.700
Buttermilk deep fried boneless chicken drumsticks dressed in tamarind glaze.

Coconut Shrimp Bao KD2.000
Coconut crusted shrimp with sweet chili aioli and pickled cucumber and crispy carrot.

Brisket Bao KD2.000
10 hours slow cooked brisket with crispy onion, red chili and ranch sauce.

Sweet Potato Sticks KD1.000

They also brought me a complimentary salad to try:

Pomelo Salad KD2.700
Cubed avocado, pomelo, pomegranate, red cabbage, shredded cucumber and mint with crunchy edamame, tossed with a tangy sweet dressing.

bao2

The orders started coming out randomly with the brisket bao being served first followed by the complimentary salad, then the drumsticks, then the sweet potato and finally the coconut shrimp. I can’t fault them on that since they had literally just opened a couple of hours earlier, so obviously the kitchen still don’t have the timings down.

Everything was pretty good with the two bao’s I had ordered being delicious. The only thing I wasn’t a fan of was the salad, but I’m generally not a salad guy with only a very few salads I like anyway. Right now they only have 9 different types of bao’s to choose from but once the restaurant officially opens they’re hoping to have around 16. One thing I really wanted to try but resisted were their desserts. They had two kinds of bao’s available, one involved fried donuts and a vanilla ice cream glaze while the other involved deep fried banana drizzled with Nutella. Both looked very tempting but decided to save them for my next visit. I ended up paying KD10 including drinks and tip. I was pretty full but if I hadn’t ordered a starter I think I would need three bao’s to fill me up. So price-wise, I wish the bao’s were like half a KD cheaper each.

bao3

Bao is currently in their soft launch phase with their opening hours being from 4PM to 10:30PM. They’re located in Kuwait City near the Sharq Police Station [Here is a Map]. All the photos in this post were taken from their instagram page since the lighting at night wasn’t great so my shots sucked.


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Slice opening in Salmiya

Posted by Mark

slice

I was dining at Köşebaşı in The Cube when on my way out I noticed Slice was opening up outside. I frequent Slice in the city quite often since they’re my favorite Doner kebab place. I always order the carb free Slice box which is basically sliced beef in a box with yogurt sauce. Good food and now conveniently located close to my house.


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Hawalli Traffic Department

Posted by Mark

muroor

Every year I have to go through the dreaded process of renewing my car registration and I hate it. The traffic department in Maidan Hawalli is just a chaotic, over crowded unorganized mess. It involves a lot of pushing and shoving and lots of waiting. But this year, something changed.

I had already finished my car check in the morning without any incidents so I headed to the traffic department to get my car registration printed. Right as I walked in I noticed they had setup a desk at the main entrance and an officer was standing in the doorway leading to the main hall. The officer was not letting anyone through unless they had stood in line and gotten their paperwork checked and stamped at the desks. I naturally stood in line which wasn’t long at all, just two people ahead of me and when it was my turn the guy behind the desk checked my papers and then told me I needed to get a stamp from the machine. I went got a stamp while he patiently waited, I then passed him the stamp, he stuck it on my papers, signed it and gave it back to me and told me to go inside. I walked into what usually is a large, noisy and overcrowded hall and walked up to a window and handed the guy my papers. A minute later he called my name and I went and he gave me my new car registration. I walked out dumbfounded.

I am a pro at renewing car registrations since I do it a few times a year for my cars and my parents cars and I’ve been doing it for a fairly long time now. Not once have I ever managed to get anything done there in under 30 minutes. It usually takes longer but lets use 30 minutes as a number for now. This year the process took less than 10. Not only that but I didn’t get shoved, I didn’t have people try and push in front of me and I didn’t have to sit in an over crowded room watching people getting yelled at by an overzealous police officer.

Whomever they’ve put in charge at the traffic department in Hawalli needs a medal. It was literally the quickest and simplest governmental service I think I’ve ever experienced anywhere yet alone in Kuwait. Why can’t all of Kuwait’s government processes be so organized like this?


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Kuwait Law: Sexual Harassment

Posted by Fajer Ahmed

no

Girls, have you ever felt uncomfortable walking down the streets in Kuwait? Ladies, have you ever heard unpleasant comments at a traffic light? Women, have you ever received a shocking sexual image via email from a co-worker by “mistake”?

These are all common incidents that happen in Kuwait to women of all ages and backgrounds, from men (or sometimes women) of all ages and backgrounds. I know this, as I am a female! Please I beg you, please stop the “Dear Mr Fajer” emails, “Dear Fajer” is fine. These incidents can come in many shapes, sounds and forms as well. I have had a few cases recently on this very topic and therefore wanted to clarify the law to my readers and the options they can take.

Please note that this article is not about “rape” or “statutory rape”, I have written about sexual crimes in a previous post [Here]

This post is about sexual harassment.

Article 191 of the Kuwait Penal Code states:
– Any person that sexually harasses another through hate, threatening or deceiving shall be punished with up to 15 years of imprisonment
– If the victim is related to the harasser, or is under his/her upbringing (example uncle, aunt, teacher, domestic worker so on) then he/she shall be punished with life imprisonment
– If the victim is under the legal age, not mentally stable, unable to know the nature of the act, then the harasser shall be punished with life imprisonment

Article 192 of Kuwait Penal Code states:
– Any person that sexually harasses another without hate, threatening or deceiving shall be punished up to 10 years of imprisonment
– If the victim is related to the harasser, or is under his/her upbringing (example uncle, aunt, teacher, domestic worker so on) then he/she shall be punished up to 15 years of imprisonment

What do you do if you are in this situation?
– If you are not 21 years of age, please speak to an adult you trust, this doesn’t have to be a family member, it can be a teacher, a friend’s mother or anyone else that you trust (you can also email me, I promise everything will be kept confidential).
– If you are an adult, please email me or go to the nearest police station.

Please note that this does not apply to online harassment, there are other departments in Kuwait that can find the person online and assist you, and they are very professional and no one will judge you. I will be discussing this in more depth in a separate post next week.

Before I end this post I would like to request your help. I recently received a few reports about a man on the loose in Salmiya that is sexually harassing minors. If you have any information on incidents of this nature in the Salmiya area, and you are willing to share, please email me urgently as this might help us put this man away and save other children.

Thank you.

Post by Fajer Ahmed – Legal Counsel
The legal opinions expressed in this post are those of the author Fajer. Opinions expressed by Mark or any other writer on 248am.com are those of the individual’s and in no way reflect Fajer’s opinion.


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Speedcam Fail

Posted by Mark

camerarevenge
It seems someone got upset at a speedcam and decided to cover the camera flash with his shemagh. Don’t know why he didn’t just cover up the camera instead.

Thanks Nicolas


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Jar at the Sahara Restaurant Village

Posted by Mark

jar1

Back in March I reported that the Sahara Restaurant Village was expected to open up sometime in April or May. It’s now the end of May and although the village hasn’t officially opened, it’s basically ready with many of the restaurants opening any day now. One of those restaurants that is set to open first is Jar. Full disclosure, Jar belongs to a close friend of mine who also happens to be the owner of Choowy Goowy. We met through the blog back in 2006 when I first discovered his cookies and we’ve been friends ever since. I can’t believe that was nearly 10 years ago, insane.

jar2

The menu at Jar hasn’t been finalized yet but I did try a few things and I generally loved most of what I had. It’s definitely not going to be a place to go to if you’re weight watching, instead its a place to go to when you just want delicious food and desert (in my case a cheat day). The interior of the place is beautiful, very minimal with a hardwood floor, super high ceiling, some copper accents and some nicely designed chairs which I fell in love with (I have a thing for chairs).

jar3

Jar is set to open up in a couple of weeks time and I’ll post another update once they do. For now you can check out their instagram account @jar.choowygoowy

The whole village seems to be properly put together with plenty of parking space and nice landscaping. I’m not sure, but I only saw one entry and exit point to this village which will most likely create a bottleneck, I’ll need to ask about that. Below is the most current list I have, of places opening up in the village:

Slider Station
Jar
Villa Fayrouz
Tatami Japanese Restaurant
52 Degrees
Caribou Coffee
Costa Coffee
Athletes Foot
Skinny Cloud
Emirgan Sutis
Le Relais de l’Entrecote
Khaneen
Ubon
Crumbs


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Ramadan is coming

Posted by Mark

ramadan

via @Qatami


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Avenues Phase 4 Updates

Posted by Mark

The Mabanee 2014 annual report recently got released and with it some updated information on the Avenues Phase 4 project:

– There will be two hotels not one, a five-star hotel and a four-star hotel
– The final new districts are: Arcadia, Electra, The Forum, The Grand Plaza and The Cinema
– Grand Avenue, Prestige and the Souk will all be expanded as well
– The new opening has been pushed back to the first quarter of 2018

Mabanee, the mall’s owning company is also building The Avenues Riyadh, The Avenues Khobar and The Avenues Bahrain. The total Phase 4 expansion will be adding 400 new stores to the Avenues, taking the total up to approximately 1200 stores. I honestly have no idea what else is still left to open, we pretty much have everything already as it is.

Check out my previous posts on the Avenues Phase 4 [Here]

Thanks Khaled


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The metro is the solution

Posted by Mark

highway

Re:Kuwait is back from the dead and with an insightful post on why more highways aren’t the solution to Kuwait’s traffic problems, instead other solutions like the metro is. Check out his post [Here]


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