|Yes, this was taken in Kuwait (not by me)|
I thought I had posted this before, but looking through my archives, I can't find it anywhere. I used to write a lot of freelance articles for various magazines and newspapers around Kuwait. This story has been published before (so it is a wee bit dated, but most of the information is still accurate). It was written at a time when I had a wonderful editor, Tim Waddell, who I miss. He and Sue Day both
made me a better writer and I miss working with).
I thought it would be a good time to whip this article back out, as it is dear to my heart and with the summer quickly approaching (one day it will be 60F and the next 110F - that's summer in Kuwait).
Some have said that Kuwait is one of the "unfriendliest tourist destinations," intimating that perhaps people won't want to "Go See Kuwait".... Well, unfriendly as some aspects are to tourism, Kuwait is still an interesting place to be discovered by many (and by many of us who live here and haven't seen it all). After all these years in Kuwait, I still learn something new here EVERY day. Your environment is what you make of it. I don't think that it is a secret that I love Kuwait. I think everyone should see it through new eyes.
GO SEE KUWAIT! - - -
Sea smuggling is a problem for the Kuwaiti government, which limited the number of allowable engines on a boat to 2, as faster boats are more difficult to catch. Coast Guardsmen and customs officials are eager to catch smugglers as they are often awarded bonuses for catches. There was a story of Russian diplomats years ago who were also divers: They were diving in an area close to Um Al Moradim for no particular reason and came across several crates of contraband alcohol on the sea floor – most likely thrown overboard by escaping smugglers. They didn’t want to bring the entire cache to the surface for fear of being caught. Instead, the kept the latitude and longitude coordinates (via GPS) and every now and then would go out to their “store” if they needed a bottle for a dinner party.
|My friends at Al Boom Dive Center take weekend trips to the islands. |
Whether you dive or not, it is a great experience.
My favorite island is Um Al Moradim, the southern-most island in Kuwait. I love to be there after the other boats have gone; staying from sunset to feed the fish cheese puffs (looks like they are playing basketball as thousands of little yellow fish pop the cheese puffs out of the water trying to bite them); until after dark when there is a moon and you can see clear to the sea floor. After almost 18 years, I'm ashamed to say that I've never been to Bubiyan Island, but there is always somewhere else remaining to discover.
There is a very good book on the varieties of fish in Kuwait (with photos) titled, "The Coral Reefs and Coral Reef Fishes of Kuwait" available for free download in .pdf format HERE. (Actually, the site has a lot of downloadable books in English for free.)