November 03, 2005
But foursomes are halal . . .
. . . if more boring. Building on the threesome discussion, below, we find foursomes more tolerated:
Several of the world’s top airlines, including Emirates . . . feature these circle-the-globe fares and Wide World of Golf can customize your land arrangements. . . .Grab your foursome.
On a slightly less glib level, and related to a point I made earlier is this:
Golf in the Middle East is no joke, as evidenced by the golf course building boom happening in Dubai. . . . Arabs generally do not play golf, but the hundreds of thousands of ex-Pats and visitors to Dubai flood the courses. . . . Dubai has hosted Tiger Woods, but Americans here in this luxurious Arabian oasis are still very scarce.
I don't read much cultural significance into the very very boring game of golf, or to its faux-sexy foursomes (not to mention holes and balls), but I note a validation of another impression, that relative to other ex-pats, Americans are scarce.
Posted by Matthew Hogan at November 3, 2005 09:40 PM
Filed Under: MENA Region General
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americans might be scarce these days - although, studying at a.u.c. in the 90s i certainly didn't get that impression - but they were APLENTY in the 60s & 70s, mainly in iran, but also in saudi & the gulf (do we count saudi as part of the gulf? are dhahranis also khalijis, but najdis & hijazis are not? but then, wouldn't omanis also not be khalijis?).
i would be very interested to see some breakdown-by-nationality statistics for foreigners working/residing in the region over the past, say, 40-50 years ...
Posted by: raf* at November 4, 2005 05:07 AM
Raf*: Again, my observation is limited but I noticed the relative American dearth in Dubai in happier times 1999-2000.
The big cause may not be mideast specific, simply a function of the fact that America is a people-importing settler-immigrant destination country and people dont usually go out. Even widely oppressed or discriminated-against groups like African Americans dont wander off in large numbers.
I do note that wanderer-hippy Americans liked Morocco in my college days circa 1980; these are the people who go where the dope is.
Posted by: matthew hogan at November 5, 2005 06:55 PM