Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lorna's mini birthday party

SaudiLifeHack # 4

Waiting for days for the hotel to deliver your laundry? You actually have to call them to deliver!

SaudiLifeHack # 3

The hotel's laundry service might actually be cheaper than that outside. Double check.

SaudiLifeHack # 2

If you were short pants, be sure that they cover your knees.

SaudiLifeHack # 1

When in a clinic or hospital, don't assume the Filipina nurses know you are waiting to see the doctor. Make sure she knows you are waiting.

View of the Faisaliyah Center from my hotel room

Close-up Photo of the Al Faisaliyah Center

Close-up Photo of the Al Faisaliyah Center. My hotel is within walking distance of this, one of two main skyscrapers in Riyadh.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Right to Left

All programs in Saudi Arabia (e.g., Microsoft products) are defaulted for text to be entered from the right to the left. This is for Arabic data entry of course. Quite interesting but a bit annoying as well to learn how to toggle to left to right.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Prayers on a Plane

A Saudi man on the plane over to Saudi Arabia was praying for several hours (a low chanting sound) right behind me. It was rather soothing. I admire his religious devotion.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Taiwanese stray dog chillin' in a bookstore

This stray dog in Taipei County knows how to beat the summer heat! Sneak into a crowded, air-conditioned bookstore! The Taiwanese seem kind to strays letting them roam free. Or might it be better for the Taiwanese to exhibit tough love to the strays, coral them up and prevent them from starving and getting mangy?

Taiwanese scooter riding hack - jackets on backwards

I have always found it very interesting that Taiwanese often wear jackets backwards when driving their ubiquitous scooters. I am told that if jackets are worn normally, wind resistance will increase making riding slower and more costly. Could this be seen as an environmental hack? I wonder why no one in Taiwan has designed a jacket that fits on backwards - market opportunity?

Taiwan's Tantilizing TiT Townhouses

I can think of few places in the world besides Taiwan that would market a residential apartment complex entitled "TiT" -- "Town in Town". Are they being coy or just didn't bother to ask any random foreigner what "tit" means? Or to just look it up in the dictionary?

Taiwan's tiny trash tins

Taiwan is one of the most crowded places on earth and yet the garbage bins are about 1/3rd the size of those found in places like Hong Kong or North America. Why? One would think the Taiwanese - who love their island - would learn from overseas and expand the size of cans? Does not seem to match with Taiwan's excellent (world-class) recycling program.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Betel Nut Princesses

The semi-narcotic betel nut (bin lang) and scantily clad young girls selling it to Taiwanese men. Videos taken in Taipei City.

Taiwan - beetle nut princesses + customers