Hamdi Shoukath Abu Hussain
Born: October 15, 1988
Profession: Social Relations Officer at Qatar Football Association
In Qatar since: Birth
Annual residence permit renewal: March
Earliest Qatar Memory: When West Bay didn’t have towers, the Old Museum, Sheraton Hotel, Salam Plaza, Palm Tree Island, Post Office, Old Msheireb (boat roundabout), orange and white taxis, Aladdin Kingdom, Canon that fires right before Maghrib adhan in Ramadan at the Corniche, Eid shopping at Sana and New World Centre, when Al Meera was Al Muntaza Co-operative society, QTV, QCB building, Souq Aseiry Complex, Irani Souq (now Souq Waqif), Oryx roundabout, Crazy roundabout (now crazy signal), the traffic at Abu Hamour school rush hours, Young Times magazine.
Those other places: I was surprised by how people were not so conservative. There was freedom of speech/expression (among other list of ‘delusional’ freedom); pleasant weather, stronger work ethics, cordial relations between foreigners and locals, smiles from strangers. However, there was also lack of respect for women, higher crime rate, rampant consumption of alcohol and drugs, weak family relations.
The thing I’d missed most about Qatar: My family, friends and home. The food and karak. Celebrating Ramadan and Eid.
What must change here, now: Qatar being a country destined to reach greater heights must embrace and appreciate the people that work to run the place. Doha mustn’t imitate Dubai, Doha is good being Doha.
What do you wish would never change: Back in the days, there were fewer people. This meant getting things done at work/home/school was easier. I believed Qatar was the safest place on the planet then with zero crime rate. Qatar’s still relatively safe compared to its peers and other advanced countries. However, the old sense of security is somehow missing.
Home is: Home is where you’ve lived all your life. You’ve got family; you’ve got friends and connections. Home is where you know the place inside out, top to bottom. No matter what part of the world you travel to, home is the place that you would be longing to get back to. Home is where the heart is.