Just Another Day

Posted by Mark

Tonight I am gonna sit at home on my comfortable couch with Nataly and finally watch City of God followed by 2046. Happy New Years.


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Jazeera Airways Review – My Experience

Posted by Mark

Jazeera Airways

I flew to Lebanon and back with Jazeera Airways last week and I decided to share my experience with the site’s readers. I had purchased two tickets online around 2 months earlier and all I needed to do was print out the confirmation email they sent and present it at the Jazeera Airways counter at the airport.

I arrived 2 hours before the flight and checked in my bags. Jazeera Airways allows you to check in only 20KG for free, anything above that you have to pay around KD1.250 per extra kilo. Unlike other airlines Jazeera can’t be flexible with the weight. On Kuwait Airways for example they allow you 30KG of weight and anything extra they can sometimes let you through without paying anything. Since Jazeera Airways profit margins are so slim they can’t be as flexible and I personally don’t have a problem with that. I paid my weight difference and got on the plane.

When I first entered the door of the Jazeera Airways aircraft I was kind of shocked. The plane is tiny with a seat formation of 3 – 3, meaning you have 3 seats on the left hand side of the plane and 3 seats on the right hand side with the aisle in between. I sat down in my seat which was in Row 10. When I was booking online the website didn’t allow me to book a seat closer to the front, the first 4 rows were first class on the website map while the seats from row 5 to 9 were not selectable and so I wasn’t able to book those. I later found out that the rows 5 to 9 are sometimes kept aside in case they needed to expand the first class to more seats. This brings me to another subject, the first class. The first class on Jazeera Airways doesn’t differ at all from the economy area. They have the same seats as us and the only difference is the middle seat on each side is temporarily converted into a table so it basically becomes a 2 – 2 formation. The leg room is also exactly the same although this is usually the biggest difference on other airlines between the first class and economy. Once the plane took off we were allowed to change seats, since the first class was only the first 4 rows I was able to go and sit in row 5. The plane had max 40 people on board and so everyone was allowed to change their seats as they pleased.

I have to say the flight was extremely comfortable. The leg room was just amazing, me being 6’1 I usually end up getting cramped on planes but Jazeera has the largest economy class leg room I have seen. The seats are all leather, very comfortable and if you lift the hand rest up you could comfortably take up the empty seat next to you. There is no free food on board only free bottled water. Sandwiches cost KD1, muffins cost 500fils, chocolate costs 300fils, softdrinks 400fils and Sunkist 250fils. Jazeera have Sunkist on board so you know they are cool and very local. The chief crewman walked around and mingled with the passengers asking their opinion on Jazeera airways and if there was anything they could do to improve the experience. I managed to speak to him and get some information off him. He explained to me why sometimes I couldn’t book the seats from row 5 to 9 online and how easy it is for them to expand or decrease the size of the first class section. He also told me Jazeera currently operate only 2 planes and the airlines is rated Class A. He explained to me how 1 plane flies from Kuwait to Beirut and Kuwait to Syria daily while the other plane flies from Kuwait to Bahrain and Kuwait to Dubai daily while also flying to Jordan three times a week. Once we were done chatting he offered me complimentary food and when I told him I didn’t need anything he still went and got me a bag of nuts to enjoy.

The plane left Kuwait on time and arrived in Beirut ahead of schedule, it was a very nice flight and I was able to watch 2 episodes of Arrested Development and 1 episode of Lost before we had to land. The flight back to Kuwait was as comfortable and although I had already booked the seats on row 10 online I was able to change it at check in to seats in row 4 since on the way back they only had 3 rows of first class.

I am extremely satisfied with Jazeera Airways, their prices are great, the planes are brand new and the service is very friendly. They seem to just want you to have a great experience. Even once we landed in Kuwait and we were on the way out of the airport a Jazeera Airways representative caught up with us to ask us if we had any feedback and if we enjoyed the experience. This is what I call good service and I would definitely recommend Jazeera to everyone.

I recorded a small crappy video showing the inside of the airplane. I didn’t know if they would allow me to shoot so its kinda shaky and short. [Video 932KB]

For more information and pricing for Jazeera Airways visit their website. [Link]


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Got Into a Fight

Posted by Mark

I went to Alghanim Electronics tonight to pay for an installment. There was a queue of around 10 people and I came and stood with them in line. Two minutes pass by when suddenly an Egyptian guy in his 30’s comes and stands in front of me. At first I thought he was with the guy in front of me but then I realized he didn’t stand next to the guy, he stood behind him. So I tapped the guy on the shoulder and asked him what he was doing. He told me he had forgotten something in the car and that he just went down to get it and came back up. I told him well when I came he wasn’t there and that he should just stand behind me in line. He refused, so we started arguing over it. I mean it wasn’t anything major, it was just over a place in line and we were both standing at the end of it. We started lightly shoving each other and yelling out insults when a guy a few places in front of us in line told me I could stand in front of him. I told him thanks but its not about the position in line anymore. This fuckhead came in out of nowhere and cut in line in front of me. If he had explained to me nicely before coming into line that he was there before me I would have let him cut in in front of me since its only 1 space but instead the guy decided to arrogantly come in as if I was invisible.

Alghanim employees although abundant didn’t seem to care about this little scuffle going on in the line, its as if they were bored and this was their entertainment. I couldn’t for one back out of this fight since I had been placed in a corner. If I stopped scuffling with the guy what would I do next? Just quietly get in line behind this fuckhead as if nothing happened? That wasn’t gonna happen.

Suddenly the Egyptian guy gave me a semi strong shove with one hand, I took that as a sign of aggression and decided to go ahead and let him have it. By then my leg had already started shaking from all the adrenalin rush and I was just waiting for him to get just a bit more aggressive so I could make my move. I grabbed the guy with my two hands on his shirt and I forcefully shoved him 2 meters back onto a fridge. I then picked him up again while he was stumbling and pushed him back hard onto the fridge again. I then grabbed him and started punching his face. Suddenly I felt someone pull me back and the other guys in the queue started to break up the fight. One guy from the queue yelled at an Alghanim employee for not stopping the fight from the beginning, the Alghanim employee told him its not part of his job.

Anyway Nat was with me and she told me we should get out of the place and that the guy wasn’t worth it and so we left. I spent the rest of the walk back home wishing I had punched the fucker in the nose to make him bleed.


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Yeah I am Back

Posted by Mark

Me and Nat got back today from Lebanon. I will post more about it all tomorrow. I also found out earlier that I have to go back to Lebanon on the 2nd of January for a photography shoot. I should be there for 6 days. I am really not in the mood to go back.. I mean I just got back!!


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I’m Coming Home

Posted by Mark

I just came back from dinner. It was great, I went to a place called Roadster with 6 hot chicks (including Nat) and I was the only guy. Really cool.

Tomorrow we are coming back to Kuwait. I can’t wait since Kuwait is more my home then Lebanon is. At the moment I feel like a tourist here living out of my suitcase… which is actually true so I can’t wait to get back to my own home and my own car.

I didn’t take as many pictures as I was hoping to. Nat bought 6 DV tapes before we left and we managed to use only 10 minutes from the first tape. I took only a handful of pictures with my digital camera while I managed to finished 2 rolls of medium format film using my Holga. For some reason taking pictures and video wasn’t on our to do list.

This I believe is my last post from Lebanon, hopefully the next one will be from Kuwait.


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Fake Stuff

Posted by Mark

I was walking in this shopping district in Lebanon when I thought I spotted a Sony PSP in the display of one shop. On closer inspection it turned out to be a fake PSP surrounded by a Fake Nintendo DS and fake iPods. Click on the link for a picture of the display. [Picture]


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Great Dane

Posted by Mark

great dane

One of Nats friends here in Lebanon has a Great Dane called Hugo. He looks like a motherfucker.


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SNOW SNOW SNOW!!!

Posted by Mark

snow

Awhile ago me and Nat drove up the mountain a bit to check out the snow and fuck was I shocked. There was A LOT of fucking snow, like a lot more then I had expected and imagined. I don’t remember a Christmas where there was this much snow by now. I got up to Faytroun an area before the ski slopes in Faraya and I had to turn back because the car was starting to slide and slip. I took some pictures though and video, the temperature was minus one. I will try to get the video online but here are the pictures:

Picture 1
Picture 2
Picture 3
Picture 4

Update: Here is the video, you probably need quicktime to view it. [MPEG 1.8MB]


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zero in action

Posted by Mark

My sister who is babysitting our pet hamster posted about her yesterday and she included a video of our hamster running around in her ball. She looks like a pinball machine gone haywire. [Link]


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five degrees

Posted by Mark

5 degrees

Yesterday morning it was five degrees celcius where we are staying at. On my way down to sea level I saw cars coming down from higher up the mountain with snow on their roofs. Its tradition that when it first starts snowing in your area you pile up as much snow as you can on the roof of your car and drive around like that as a way of informing people down below that its snowing up in the mountains where you live.

All of Lebanon seems to have the flu. I think the sudden change from its hot enough to wear a tshirt to its cold enough to store your frozen goods on the balcony has caught many people by surprise. Nat is sick and I am not, but I think thats going to change today. I feel it coming.


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