chaos, carpets, and chennai
Sharjah Travel Blog› entry 15 of 29 › view all entries
Yea so today I decided to drive to Sharjah in order to check it out, because I was curious. Sharjah is a suburb of Dubai but its a completly different world. While dubai is beatiful. modern, and kind of annoyingly glitzy, sharjah is full of crumbling highrises and is the home of the indian and pakastani underclass that cleans the toilets, and works at the stores of Dubai.
Sharjah is worth a visit as there are some beautiful buildings and forts; however I wouldn't plan on spending the night there. The first thing I noticed is that there are not any women walking around. The reason for this is that Sharjah is the only terrotory that has sarihah islamic law, so basically stone age rules. No alcohol, women aren't supposed to walk around wihtout a relative, and penalties for breaking the laws are harsh. In fact 17 indians who beat a pakastani to death are about to get put in front of the firing squad! Also an indian couple was kissing in the back of a taxi, the driver dropped them off at the police station, and they spent a year in the big house! The point being is that they have some harsh laws, however they won't apply to you unless your from the former british raj.
On to the second point. Sharjah is full of "Bacholer appartments", basically as many indian men pack into an appartment and live together, making the man to women ratio highly skewed
About the city, there are a few blocks with some fairly old buildings, and there are some beautiful museums that are worht a visit; however I had a much more interesting experience. You see betwen noon and one is the time to go to the masque for worship., and well in sharjaah you better go to masque.... At noon I was in a store looking at the goods when the islamic police showed up with a huge stick and chased everyone out! OK, so I hopped into my car and drove aroud the coast checking out the beautiful gulf. The area around Sharjah is actually pretty ugly having heavy shipping and some sort of smoky factory, why build it in front of your historical area.... no idea!
So I was driving, ended up in a factory so I figured I 'de head back to Dubai. And thats when things got interesting..... It was about 12:50 and I was in the area with lots of masques. It was an orgy of people squating, people running with their rugs, and people trying to get home to beat the post-worship rush. I went down a sidestreet to beat the traffic and ended up in a huge series of dirt parking lots with roundabouts at the entrances and exits. So I then got to play a game similar to the nentendo classic rad races or mario kart for you youngins. Yea so I'm driving on the dusty dirt road, rocks are flying everywhere, worshipers running buy with their carpets, and people driving in every direction trying to get home..... and if you would like a similar experience hang out in sharjah on a friday at around 1! You woun't regret it, unless you run someone over.... then it sucks to be you!