It’s been over a year since moving to Bahrain and I’ve already slipped into that not a tourist mode that I lived in while in London. Well, I think I slipped into that a long time ago. It’s great being able to feel at home somewhere completely new. But a little bit sad thinking I haven’t done nearly all the tourist-y things I should be doing, living here.
Like visiting the Bahrain National Museum
Okay, maybe I played that up a little bit much. Unlike London, there’s nothing like National History Museum, Victoria & Albert, Tate Modern or Science Museum. Which is a shame, because after visiting the Bahrain National Museum I realised there’s actually a massive amount of history about this little island that I had no idea about. And it’s an ancient history going back hundreds of years. Due to the massive amount of constant building work and reclaiming of land that has happened in the past few decades, some of this history has been unearthed very recently.
There’s this wonderful place called Chakazoolu, in Bahrain. Found at the top-level in Dana Mall, it’s Bahrain’s one and only indoor theme park. Yes, theme park. In a mall. Complete with a 7D cinema (Someone tell me what all the D’s are.) roller coaster, bumper boats and some sort of river rapids.
Can you spot anything missing from this photo?
The OH bought a bunch of voucher style ticket things that you can redeem for credits to pay for the ‘coaster, rides and arcade games. We’ve been saying for weeks we’ll go. On a Sunday though. Preferably before schools break for the day. Last weekend we finally managed to get out there. On the Sunday. Before the schools broke for the day. We were the biggest kids there. We were the only kids there. Well, we were the only people there.
Before the heat really sets in, it feels like all of Bahrain is trying to get in as much outdoor activity as possible. A few weeks ago there was the Redbull X-Fighters Jams and just last weekend it was the pretty damn epic Formula 1.
I hold my hands up. I’m not what you’d call an F1 fan. I enjoy watching some motor sports. Especially anything to do with rally driving. I watch(ed) Top Gear. And not for the stars in the reasonably priced cars – that’s usually the bit I’m most likely to fast forward through. So even though I’m not an F1 follower it’d be stupid of me not to go to the Bahrain GP right here in Bahrain.
Too many times I’ve caught myself saying, there’s never anything to do in Bahrain. There’s never anything on. In my defence, coming from London, that’s sort of true. But, feels like things are changing in Bahrain.
Take this for example – for the first time ever, the Red Bull X-Fighters came to Bahrain for a couple of nights. Now we almost didn’t make this, due to an epic dust storm that took over the entire island. Though, thankfully due to said dust storm, the night these guys were performing was pushed back, and we could make it!
Never have I seen any of this sort of stuff live. Casually perused events if they’re on TV or watched a few YouTube videos, so I’m not what you’d call a fan. Though I think it’s fucking amazing what these guys do. And when’s the next time I’m going to be able to see some guy do a superman in the air while riding a bike?
Can I just tell you something extraordinarily exciting right now? One of the most exciting and unexpected things I have experienced here in Bahrain, so far.
Going to the cinema.
Stay with me here. Back in England I was beginning to, not hate, but not quite enjoy my cinema experience. Extortionate ticket prices. Combined with having to sit with a bunch of people who are clearly more interested in what was happening on WhatsApp or Facebook than watching the film they had paid to see.