No Cameras Allowed on Green Island

Post by Mark

A few days ago I went to Green Island with my new camera to take some pictures and was stopped on the way in. I had already purchased my entry ticket (1KD btw) and as I was walking in they spotted my camera and told me I couldn’t bring it in. I told them I had a camera on my phone as well but they were ok with that, but that I just couldn’t bring my camera in. I was like ok fine, I went back to the ticket window to return my ticket and get a refund, but I guess that would have been too much of a hassle for the guy because he asked me if I just wanted to take pictures? I told him yes so he then let me in with my camera.

I have no idea why they would be anti-photography, Green Island is a desolate place that has nothing going for it other than it being an interesting place to take some photos. So weird.


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The Emergency Lane Tragedy

Post by Mark

I’ve been complaining about the emergency lane rules ever since they were announced a few years ago. I think they’re just too complicated and didn’t make sense, either convert the emergency lane into a regular lane or keep it as it is.

Does anybody here actually know what are the hours you’re allowed to use the emergency lane in?

a) 6AM to 10PM
b) 6AM to 10PM only in case of traffic congestion
c) 6:30AM to 9AM into the city and 12:30PM to 3:30PM out of the city
d) 6AM to 9AM and 12:30PM to 3:30PM
e) None of the above

I actually don’t know the answer since I’ve posted all the above previously on the blog. Maybe none of the above are right since the timings could have changed and I wouldn’t know.

Recently the sister in law of a friend of mine got into an accident. I’ve met her a few times since she helped out on the blog a few years ago, a super nice person. She was on the highway with her 4-month-old daughter and nanny when she felt something was wrong in the car, so she pulled into the emergency lane and stopped. A car speeding in the emergency lane (max speed is meant to be 45km) crashed into her car killing her daughter and sending her and the nanny to the hospital. Such a horrific incident.

This sometimes it’s an emergency lane and sometimes it’s not is just a confusing and stupid mess. Either convert the lane to a regular lane or leave it an emergency lane. I don’t understand why they’re being so timid. This accident has caused an outcry in the media and hopefully, they’re going to solve this before any more lives are lost.


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Habitat Museum Not Being Maintained?

Post by Mark

I’m a big fan of the Habitat Museum at Al Shaheed Park but now not so sure. I was there over the weekend and it looked so sad. One part of the ceiling looks to have leaked near where the glass floor is with the sea creatures so there are plastic sheets covering part of the area where that happened, and then none of the 3D projectors were working. So you now have this large room with plain white empty tables but nothing projected onto them.

From what I understood from the employee is they’ve been like this for a while and they’re just waiting on the company that built the space to fix them. Hopefully, the issues get sorted soon since the weather is going to start getting cooler and the park will be busy again.


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Customer Service Over Instagram

Post by Mark

Last night I was at The Avenues and decided to pass by the newly opened Pick. When I got there I walked up to the tiny 2 person line behind the cashier and waited for my turn. While waiting, I noticed a long queue on the left side of the place lined up behind another cashier. I realized it might be a one-line queue for two cashiers and that I might have been cutting the line. Or maybe the other people didn’t realize there was a second cashier?

I decided to leave Pick because the situation was confusing, but decided to message them on Instagram just out of curiosity to see if it was actually two separate lines, or one line with two cashiers. My exchange with them was so good I felt it was worth posting about.

Firstly, someone saw my DM right away, they then quickly responded to my question and were apologetic and admitted the situation was actually confusing. The whole conversation was so friendly and sincere, they made me an even bigger fan of the brand.

The situation made me realize again how amazing social media has become for communicating with brands, especially when you have a problem. I’ve DM’d brands a ton of times either to complain, give feedback, ask questions or even to try and cut through lines at clubs (Thank you @the.garten). Other than my internet provider I no longer contact brands any other way. When I had an issue with AVIS in the US I tried calling them on the phone and after spending an hour either on hold or trying to navigate their robotic call center, I decided to tweet them. I ended up getting a response back on twitter in less than 5 minutes! In Kuwait it’s been no different, other than the local Ikea and Jeep dealer (still waiting for a response guys), my experience with customer service on instagram has been pretty good so far. I love it.


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Fake Plastic Trees

Post by Mark

I really hope the picture above isn’t really in Kuwait. Fake grass I kinda get but this is just silly.

Thanks Musaed

Update: It’s Saudi!


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Not Enough Controversy

Post by Mark

A friend shared the commercial above with me yesterday and my first reaction was wtf? In the commercial, a husband walks into a kitchen and starts screaming and hitting his wife for buying the wrong honey. The wife looks terrified and is being apologetic while the husband continues to shout at her before leaving the kitchen angrily.

The commercial got a lot of negative reactions for normalizing domestic violence so I assumed the brand removed the video from their Instagram account, except they didn’t.

Last week another friend of mine shared the screenshot above on her instastory which she took from a show on KTV called “Block” where they had a blackface character.

I don’t think I’m a very PC or an over sensitive person but, I do find it disturbing how the majority of people seem to be OK with this. I’m assuming the majority are ok with it or else the commercial would have been removed and the show would have apologized or been canceled for blackfacing. Yet neither has happened but oddly enough, the commercial below for Mug Coffee House was supposedly suspended by the Ministry because they found it Masonic. So bizarre.


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Dear Ooredoo

Post by Mark

Since you’re ignoring me on twitter figured I’d ask here. Why are you guys blocking my section Kuwestions?

Update: Got a call from Ooredoo and they’re fixing this


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You Do Not Want to Renew Your Drivers License

Post by Mark

Previously, whenever you renewed your driving license it would get renewed for 10 years. I’m not really sure when that law changed, but now you have to renew it every year. Last year it took me 2 hours to get my license renewed, and that’s after I got super lucky when an officer ended up signing my papers for me without me having to wait in a line that was easily 100 people long.

I usually get all my car related paperwork done at the Jabriya Traffic Department. They’re really organized and every year when I go to renew my car registration, they would have changed something to make the experience smoother and faster. I was expecting the license renewal process to be easier this year because of that but boy was I wrong.

The line when I passed by yesterday to renew my license was crazy crazy long! The picture above was taken as I was walking to the back of the line, around half way to the back (check map above for exact location). The line stretched down a super long corridor and then turned around the corner because it was so long and it wasn’t even people standing in a single file, it looked like a complete mess.

Clearly the traffic department isn’t capable of handling this many renewals, so why don’t they just revert to the older system and have people do this once every 10 years? I ended up leaving but now I’m trying to figure out if I should get there early and line up or what exactly. The renewal for expats only starts at 4PM and they only take so many requests before telling everyone to come back the following day and line up again. So stressful!

Update: A reader just told me about a company that can handle your license renewal process as well as other things. They charge KD10 to renew your license which I think is so worth it. Here is a link to the [Flyer]


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Billboards on the Gulf Road

Post by Mark

Why do we now have billboards every 20m on the Gulf Road? It used to be one of the most scenic roads in Kuwait and now it’s plastered with billboards all down the middle. If it was one billboard every now and then I can understand, if they were on the side of the Gulf Road, I could understand that as well, but they’re just back to back all along the middle. I think there are more billboards down the middle of the Gulf Road than there are palm trees, and I’m not exaggerating.

Speaking of billboards, do people still not know what it means when a word has a red squiggly line under it?


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Why are Supplements so Expensive in Kuwait?

Post by Mark

Supplements are pretty expensive in Kuwait but I had forgotten how expensive until last night. I dropped by Health Planet to pick up ZMA and they only had the supplement in the MET-Rx brand. I decided to check Amazon for reviews and noticed that the price on Amazon was just $9.99 which is basically 3KD. The price at Health Planet? 14.5KD. That’s nearly 5 times more expensive than the Amazon price.

Why are supplements still so expensive in Kuwait? A few years ago there weren’t that many places that sold supplements but now there are a whole bunch of them and the prices have yet to fall.

I used to order my supplements from UAE based Sporter, but they’ve now started charging for shipping so it’s no longer feasible to order from them anymore. I should have gotten supplements back with me from LA, no idea why I didn’t think about that but even if I did, that would have just been a short-term fix.


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