16 04, 2019

Volunteer Rescue Teams

2019-04-17T09:45:11+03:00Apr 16, 2019|10 Comments

A couple of weeks back a friend of mine had a dead car battery so I went to help her out. When I got to her car I spotted what I thought was an undercover cop talking to her. The guy had an old Mercedes with flashing lights, and he was wearing a yellow reflective vest. After talking to him I found out he was part of a volunteer rescue team called Dar Subhan who are always on the lookout for people needing help.

I was meaning to post about them but completely forgot until yesterday while riding my bicycle on the Gulf Road I spotted a rescue team helping a car out. There was a Nissan Patrol that had gotten stuck on the beach trying to pull in his boat and the rescue team were helping him. I thought it was the same rescue team that I had run into a couple weeks ago but this one was called Kuwait Support and Rescue Team (KSRT).

KSRT have been active for around a year now while Dar Subhan have only been around since March. I’m not sure how many other volunteer teams there are but if you ever have any car trouble or are stuck out in the desert, it could be worth giving these guys a call instead of the emergency services. Here are their contacts including links to their instagram account:

Dar Subhan Rescue Team
97732441 / 91111584

Kuwait Support and Rescue Team
97865006 / 94147001 / 67651169

Update: Here is another

Kuwait Rescue Team
66665488 / 98809058

9 04, 2019

Dinner in the Sky Now in Kuwait

2019-04-09T00:24:36+03:00Apr 9, 2019|22 Comments

The Belgian based novelty pop-up restaurant which uses a crane to raise its diners and chefs up into the air is now in Kuwait. The set up is located at Marina Crescent and they’re offering a bunch of different packages which I’ve listed here:

Tea Break: KD30
Lunch/dinner: KD50
Lunch/dinner with live music: KD60
Coffee Time (Ramadan): KD40

Their booking page only lets you book till the end of June so I’m assuming that’s how long they’ll be here for, but it’s already getting pretty hot so I highly doubt it’s gonna last that long. Plus the timing is a bit weird since Ramadan is around the corner and people generally don’t eat out the first two weeks.

If you want to find out more or even book a lunch or dinner, visit their website dinnerinthesky.com.kw

Thanks Waleed

27 03, 2019

Visiting The Kuwait National Library

2019-03-28T07:58:31+03:00Mar 27, 2019|23 Comments

Around 4 years ago I passed by The Kuwait National Library. The library wasn’t officially open then but I had a meeting with the team there and before my meeting started, I wandered around a bit and explored what I thought were all the English books they had in this very small section near the meeting room. I wasn’t that impressed.

Since then I’ve been meaning to drop by again but never did, partially because I wasn’t impressed the first time but also because their opening hours are terrible, 9AM to 1PM during weekdays.. basically when everyone is at work. But, I did manage to finally drop by the library this morning and I’ve changed my mind, I now love the place.

The national library is spread out over three floors not including the ground floor. I’m sure the way the books were divided kinda made sense, but I was just wandering around exploring and randomly looking for English books. So this is the thing I didn’t realize the first time I was there, there isn’t just one section where all the English books are located. Instead, the library is divided into different areas like Encyclopedias or books about Kuwait etc.., and in each of these areas you’ll find an English books corner.

There were a handful of people in the library when I was there (because everyone has a day job obviously), so I was able to just walk around the different floors and sections, randomly exploring without disturbing anyone. I’m not sure I managed to see all the areas but even if I did, I really do have to go back and spend a lot more time there.

My favorite sections were probably the books on Kuwait section as well as the newspaper archives section. If you check my instagram story I shared some videos of that section. The newspaper archive section had these massive books of different Kuwaiti newspapers from the 60s, 70s, 80s etc.. and you just flip through them, every page of the book is a page from a newspaper. They’re so good and there were so many of them so I really want to go back and flip through more of those books.

There was also this very cool section with shelves that opened and moved with a touch of a button, there was a section where employees were busy digitizing books using these super cool laser scanners (pictured above), and there was even a rare books section.

I really love old books, especially ones related to Kuwait so I really did enjoy just sitting on the floor and flipping through random books. You can’t take the books out of the library, but that’s really not an issue for me and if anything, I prefer it since the books will always be there to check.

Their opening hours are terrible and that really is my biggest issue with the place. I really want you all to pass by and check the library out, but I also know that the majority of you have jobs and aren’t going to want to take a day off just to explore a library. But if you can, then they’re open from Sunday to Thursday, 9AM to 1PM. The library is located right next to the Sadu House and the National Museum [Google Maps]. Everyone can access the library, and it’s free. You just need to give them your Civil ID card at the door.

If you follow me on instagram (@mark248am) then check out my story today, I’ll also have it as a highlight for a few days in case you read this post late.

The National Library of Kuwait’s website is nlk.gov.kw

19 03, 2019

Guide: How to update your Civil ID’s name to match your passport’s

2019-03-19T10:45:11+03:00Mar 19, 2019|65 Comments

Recently a decision was made to cancel the use of residency stickers inside passports. Instead, you’ll need to have a valid Civil ID card when traveling as a means of verifying your residency. The name on the Civil ID card has to match your name in your passport or you’ll risk being denied travel in or out of Kuwait. Having weird spellings or incorrect data on the Civil ID is pretty common, so if your info doesn’t match your passport, you now have to fix it. Yesterday someone on Reddit posted the steps below on how to go about doing this:

Step 1) Go to the PACI eEnvelope system website, if the website is in Arabic you can change the language to English, there’s an option at the top of the page

Step 2) Click on non-Kuwaiti Renewal

Step 3) Enter your Civil ID and serial no. which is shown on the back

Step 4) You’ll have to verify your mobile no. so they’ll send you a verification SMS

Step 5) Enter all data required (blood type is optional but if that needs changing too then you’ll need to also upload a lab report)

Step 6) Upload the required documents

Step 7) You’ll be sent an application’s reference number to your registered mobile no., which you can use to track your application’s progress

Step 8) Wait and wait, this will take a few days as your application needs to be checked manually, once it’s approved you’ll be sent a link on your mobile to make the payment of KD5, after that you’ll just go have to go to South Surra to replace your old ID with the new one

Thanks Stafa!

13 03, 2019

The Scientific Center Expansion has Begun

2019-03-13T12:42:42+03:00Mar 13, 2019|9 Comments

A few years ago I posted about the Scientific Center expansion plans and one of the most controversial aspects of it was the fact the plans included a new dolphinarium. As you know, holding dolphins in captivity is pretty cruel and a friend of mine even posted an appeal in hopes of stopping it.

Recently construction started next to Scientific Center and I was curious to know if the dolphinarium was still being built. So I got in touch with my contact at the Scientific Center who not only reassured me that they are not going ahead with the dolphinarium, but he also shared with me some new information on the expansion as well as the visuals I’ve shared in this post.

The Scientific Center have now started construction work on the new expansion, with the first phase focused on marine works and land reclamation. This includes renovation of the Dhow Harbor area and the relocation of the seawater intake pipe which provides clean seawater to the tanks within the aquarium. The construction you see now on the side of the Scientific Center (pictured above) is for the marine works which is estimated to take around 9 months. This will be followed by the groundbreaking, structural foundation of the expansion, the construction of the superstructure, MEP, the finishing and new exhibits installations, and then finally the renovation of the existing building attractions and exhibits.

The design and programming of the expansion building was developed as a priority, in partnership with the center’s Board and consultation from the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS). The expansion commits the center to playing a leading role on a national level to transform the country and help develop a knowledge-driven economy. Because of this commitment, the programming and exhibits within the expansion aim to increase the quality of STEM teaching from the center, as well as the importance of environmental protection, through engaging learning experiences.

The expansion will introduce new concepts to the region, as well as inspiring exhibits, through both new additions and the renovation of current ones. The public can expect to see reinvigorated ecosystems in the Mijbil Almutawa Aquarium, modern commodities and services, a brand new children’s science museum, as well as numerous new halls and labs enabling visitors, schools, universities and more to engage with the center in developing their own innovations to better Kuwait.

Here are some other facts you might find interesting:

– The renovation of the aquarium is being done in partnership with the creative
design and consultancy firm ROTO, who you can learn about [Here]

– The overall expansion is estimated to come at an approximate value of KD 36 million, with a timeline of projected completion by 2022

– Many people aren’t aware that the Scientific Center is a non-profit

– The center is aiming to introduce class-specific programs, labs, and workshops for educators to use for their own curriculum

– The footprint of the center is doubling

So to summarize, there will be no dolphinarium and the Scientific Center will be increasing their exhibits and attractions and refurbishing the current building. All of that is expected to be completed in around 3-4 years.

13 03, 2019

Where to buy telescopes in Kuwait?

2019-03-13T09:24:04+03:00Mar 13, 2019|4 Comments

Around a decade ago, maybe more, there used to be a store in Muthana Complex that used to just sell telescopes. That store closed down ages ago and after that, the only other place I knew of that sold good telescopes was Xcite in Avenues. But, they no longer seem to carry them anymore so right now if you’re looking for a telescope, your best option is the Abdullah Al Salem Cultural Centre (ASCC).

Inside the space museum at ASCC there is a gift shop that sells Celestron brand of telescopes. Below are the models I spotted along with their prices and a comparison to Amazon.

Celestron AstroMaster 70 EQ
Amazon: KD40
ASCC: KD50

Celestron AstroMaster 90 EQ
Amazon: KD67
ASCC: KD80

Celestron AstroMaster 114 EQ
Amazon: KD55
ASCC: KD80

Celestron Ultima 65
Amazon: KD40
ASCC: KD70

The pricing seems pretty decent on most of them especially when you consider the Amazon prices I’ve listed don’t include any taxes or shipping costs. So if you’re looking for a telescope, you should head to the space museum gift shop.

20 02, 2019

Ear Molds for Custom Earphone Sleeves

2019-02-20T08:19:28+03:00Feb 20, 2019|3 Comments

If you’ve ever researched high-end music earphones or maybe you’ve purchased a pair before, you’d know that you can get custom sleeves for them. Earphones (the type you stick inside your ear) come with different sized rubber sleeves, usually similar to the ones below. These are made to fit the majority of ears but aren’t a perfect fit.

With high-end earphones, you can get custom silicon sleeves made to fit your unique ear canal shape offering your better sound isolation and a perfect fit. To get these custom sleeves done, you need to send the manufacturer an impression of your ear. A few days ago someone on Reddit asked where to get this done in Kuwait, so I figured I’d post that information here.

International Optics have a Hearing Center at their location in Central Plaza in Salmiya. At the hearing center they can take an impression of your ear and have your mold ready all within 15 minutes. Once they give you the mold you could then mail that to the silicon sleeve manufacturer abroad to create the custom sleeve for you. The cost for two earmolds (left and right) is KD15.

So if you’re ever looking to get molds done, that’s a place you can go to. Their phone number is 25714573 or 97234752 and they’re located [Here]