FC: Dave and Jen in Doha
1: We've enjoyed living in Doha for the last year. We hope this book gives you a better idea of where we are and what it's like to live here. Love, Dave and Jen
2: Here's some help in finding Qatar and Doha on the map.
3: We live toward the southwest side of town, and the university is on the north side of Doha. People who have lived here a long time think we live "way, far away" from the university. It wasn't that long ago, apparently, when the university was all by itself up there. Now, there's lots of construction going on around it. | For those of you with access to Google Earth, you can find our locations at the following coordinates: Qatar University: 2522'27.33"N 5129'25.73"E Our apartment: 2515'38.64"N 5127'45.15"E
4: Background Ruled by the al-Thani family since the mid-1800s, Qatar transformed itself from a poor British protectorate noted mainly for pearling into an independent state with significant oil and natural gas revenues. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Qatari economy was crippled by a continuous siphoning off of petroleum revenues by the Amir, who had ruled the country since 1972. His son, the current Amir HAMAD bin Khalifa al-Thani, overthrew him in a bloodless coup in 1995. As of 2007, oil and natural gas revenues had enabled Qatar to attain the highest per capita income in the world (over $80,000). Information from the following: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/qa.html http://www.atlapedia.com/online/countries/qatar.htm http://www.weather.com/outlook/travel/businesstraveler/wxclimatology/monthly/graph/QAXX0003?from=36hr_bottomnav_business | Size Qatar has 4,416 square miles; in other words, roughly 17 Qatars fit in Nebraska alone. About 12 1/2 Qatars fit in Iowa. Population Estimates vary, but the consensus seems to be a minimum of 1 million, and possibly more. The population is exploding, though. The country is made up of roughly 80% expatriates. Weather The average daily high from May to September is over 100F, while the average low is in the 50s from December through February. Average yearly rainfall is less then 3 inches. Water There is no permanent standing water in Qatar. As a result, a significant amount of water is gathered through desalination and from the water table. | A few facts about Qatar
5: Our apartment | Top: living room. Middle: living room looking into the dining room. Bottom: the hallway that connects all the rooms; the kitchen is the first left, office first right, back bedroom second right and master bedroom second left.
6: Clockwise from top left: bathroom, kitchen, office-bedroom, master bedroom.
7: Around town
8: Construction is a never-ending reality here. It's both exciting to see and frustrating to experience.
9: Doha occasionally hosts world-class speedboat races. This year, a team from Norway won.
10: In addition to the rapidly developing skyline (above), the Museum of Islamic Arts (right) is on the Corniche, the waterfront part of the city. Souq Waqif (shown elsewhere) and the Royal Palace are also near the Corniche.
11: We've seen sports events here like gymnastics, cycling and tennis, all with world-class athletes. Doha lost a bid for the 2016 Olympics, but is now bidding for the 2018 World Cup.
12: We've seen some strange things here, like camels, sheep and goats in the back of trucks. Conversely, there are almost too many Porsches to count, and Lamborghinis aren't that uncommon.
13: It's been nice to see some familiar sights like KFC, Hardees and Dairy Queen. We also have restaurants like Applebees, Chili's, Starbucks, Baskin Robbins, Krispy Kreme and others. No Taco Bell, though. We can also get many American brands of food, although the price can be quite high.
14: Qatar University is the only national university in the country, although there are also a number of branches of US and Canadian schools like Texas A&M and Weill-Cornell Medical School.
15: Souq Waqif is a popular tourist attraction. It is being rebuilt in the style of the old souq (Arabic for market) but bigger. It apparently is one of the few souqs in the Gulf that has not been reclaimed as space for skyscrapers.
16: Souq Waqif has quite a few good restaurants with indoor and outdoor seating.
17: The Qatar Islamic Cultural Center tower is one of the most recognizable elements of the Doha skyline.
18: Khalifa Stadium and Aspire Tower, not far from our apartment, are two memorable parts of Doha's landscape. Doha is trying to develop a world-class athletic infrastructure, including a sports hospital and a live-in sports academy and high school.
20: We've spent some time in the desert with friends, including Christmas Day (top). Surprisingly, flowers even grow in the desert.
22: Dave's Reading and Writing class, Spring of 2008 | Dave's Listening and Speaking class, Spring of 2008
29: Art Pictures These snapshots were all taken in and around Doha. I just like the way they look.