Thursday, September 29, 2005

I (heart) Saudi

I've just discovered an interesting Saudi Blog - Farah's Sowaleef - I came across it because of some comments I'd made on The Religious Policeman's blog - the post in question is entitled 'It's Good News Day! '. There seems to be a state of open warfare between these two people, with Farah being a youngish student in Riyadh, and luvvin' it, and Al Hamedi being the miserable old git exiled in England. Farah and many of her commenters doubt the veracity of Al Hamedi's claims to be a genuine Saudi. To which I say 'why claim to be Saudi if you're not?'. Bah. Have a read through Farah's blog though, it's very interesting and it might even make you want to visit. Not that they'd give you a visa or make you feel welcome or anything.

While we're on the subject of Saudis, Dubai is awash with them this week. It seems that 30-40,000 of them have come over to try to buy shares in the ludicrously underpriced IPO of Dana Gas. I had to visit my bank yesterday, and in the taxi on the way we were twice cut-up by cars bearing Saudi plates, and once stopped and asked for directions to a particular bank. When we got to my bank I could barely get through the doors, and the noise was unbelievable. The queue that was trailing out of the front door curved round to the staircase and up across the mezzanine floor, where, presumably, the applicants were being dealt with in an appropriate manner.

Apparently the big hoo-hah is because this particular IPO has been made available to all GCC nationals, rather than just UAE nationals. But in order to apply for the shares, you have to physically get a form from one of the participating banks in the UAE. Of course there's no guarantee that you will be allocated anything, and it looks like the whole thing is turning into a bit of a fiasco.