Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Day 25: Commuting: Kuwait Style

Dear Family-

I gave you a brief introduction to driving in Kuwait by telling you how fast and unregulated the whole thing was. Now, I thought that I would tell what is like commuting each day. We leave at dark o'clock each morning for the base. The roads around where we live are not paved and are very bumpy. This area is still under development so nothing is finished. The materials for finished sidewalks and stuff are stack all around. The first 1/2 mile is pretty bumpy until we get to a pave area and then it is off to the expressway. At this point, everything pretty much goes to hell. Depending on the time of day, you have a lot of cars going really fast going and not really looking out for each other. At home, we entrances that allow you to go the direction you want to travel. Here you don't have that luxury. You enter where you enter and then you have to drive down the expressway to where there is a place to a u-turn. At that point, it is like getting on the old 110 freeway in Pasadena. You need to accelerate really fast to get going the other direction. At this point you are often greeted by flashing headlights and blaring horns. Once you are up to speed, you have to pay more attention to what is coming up behind you than what is in front of you. People coming up from behind expect that you see them and will just get out of their way. Luckily, the signs along the expressway have English as well as Arabic so we can pretty much tell where you are going. The drive takes us by multiple refineries along the way. The most remarkable thing about the refineries are that they have multiple large pipes emitting these huge flames. These pipes are called flare headers and are used to burn off gases that are released do to the over pressurization of the refining equipment. (I will try and get a picture of this as soon as I can. ) Once we past the refineries we pretty much head out in to the desert to the base. Once on base, we have to go through multiple check points to have our ID's checked and the vehicle thoroughly inspected. From the time we leave the villas to the time we reach our building it takes about 45 minutes. It all actuality, the trip should only take about twenty minutes. I am trying to get clarification on what pictures I can and can not take so I do not compromise anything. All for now!

Love you guys!

No comments: