Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Games of our Lives

Going out during the Games was nothing like in Melbourne. There was no official niteclub, no parties and no alcohol at venues. The atmosphere was a little duller than would be found at any event in Melbourbourne. At the Diving the only cheers that could be heard were from the Athlete stands! Some sports provided some crowd entertainment. At the Handball Final between Iraq and Qatar a VIP guest from Iraq gave a fellow VIP guest from Qatar the finger. What followed you could never imagine would be done anywhere else in the world! The Iraqi Gentleman was then escorted into the walkway, and The Ministry of Interior for the Government of Qatar proceeded to bash the living hell out of him!! In front of the entire stadium! That sort of behaviour would not be tolerated in Qatar!! Iraq was winning and went on the take the Gold, poor losers!

Anyway as it got closer to the end of the Games we hit Rydges most nights, a Hotel with an Aussie Bar! It was full mostly with DAGOC staff, some Media and a few lucky Athletes that heard about the place!

It was a great experience to watch Sports I'd never heard of before like Kabaddi and Sepaktakraw and also to watch the Fencing, Beach Volleyball and Diving. The Emir even showed face at the Sepaktakraw final, just a casual appearance.

Watched the Closing on TV at Garveys and then headed out to the Doha Rubgy Club for a big thank-god-its-over night with friends! Haven't had to work since the last day of the Games so its been great. Leaving for Egypt in a couple of days, back here for a week and then finishing up on the 15th Jan. Will head to Oman and then Thailand before reaching AUS! Can't wait!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Melbourne Cup in Doha

Last month the Doha Golf Club ran a Melbourne Cup function for all Aussies in Doha. DAGOC Aussies making up most of the crowd.

It was a fantastic night, they set up a bar and had a huge marquee on the grass which was so lovely. We all frocked up and the entire night really didn't feel like we were in Doha which was great!

Would have prefered of course to be at home for the Spring Carnival, probably my favourite time of the year in Melbourne.

Clown Suits

Our Games Workforce Uniform looks so much like a Clown Suit that I feel I should be hoping on my unicyle to get to work(the Circus) everyday!

Definately glad I'm not working in Uniforms here. Our Accreditation Team Above...

Kabaddi Kabaddi Kabaddi...

It's been a great games so far, although a far cry from the "Games of Your Life" - the official games slogan! I've been able to see the Beach Volleyball, Fencing and my favourite Kabaddi! It was a mad rush to get in and get seats as it's been one of the most popular sports here. Me & Andy sat with the underdogs Pakistan and were warmly welcomed with plastic Pakistani flags! It was a little hard to know what was going on at first, I still don't really understand the games. Something along the lines of tagging and pouncing on the oposition like a game of "Stacks-On"! Anyway it was hilarious to watch. The Indians won for the 5th Asian Games in a row, they were by far the better team.

It was my first time at Sport City, a massive sporting presinct with 2 massive venues and the huge torch, a Hotel they had hoped would be ready in time for the Games. It's probably the best thing going for Qatar although lacking the atmosphere alcohol and live music would bring!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Let the Games Begin!!

I have been here for 5 months now and can't believe how fast the Games have crept up on me! Haven't had a day off in over two months but its kind of been worth it!

The Opening Ceremony was something else. Rumor has it the Budget was over $US200mil!!! Unfortunately money really can't buy everything and it bucketed down for most of the night. I haven't seen a single drop of rain in 5 months and the first 2 days of the Games it rained constantly.

Tomorrow we're all headed to watch the Finals of the Men's Kabaddi! A sport originating from India its much the same as British Bulldog! Pakistan and India are in the finals and the fans are meant to be crazy! Really looking forward to it!