Bahrain holds a special place in my husband’s heart. It’s the place where he lived until he was 6. Where his dad lived for 35 years. Where he spent countless summers, winters, Easters visiting. A place to him that was always home. A place that helped him grow a love for all things Middle Eastern. That rooted in him a desire to live abroad today. That in its own way played its own part in our expatriation to Dubai.
So when we moved to Dubai with Bahrain only a hop skip and a jump away it seemed only right that we take a weekend over there. His Dad having left in 2010 it would be the first time we would have been back without going to the family home which of course is no longer the family home. A pilgrimage taking the Toddler with us.
Staying at the Radisson Blu Diplomat Hotel which houses “The Fiddlers Green” a pub I remember from my first trip to Bahrain. A regular haunt of my father-in-laws so we snuck a quick drink or 2 in before getting on with our reminiscing trip.
The first morning we headed out to the compound where my father-in-law lived for 30 (or so) years for a real trip down memory lane. On the compound there is something that is known simply as “the log” a random piece of wood that was made into a bench of sorts and put into place back in the early eighties. A place where everyone knew to head to for a drink and a look over the bay. A place where my husband used to run around and play while barbecues were cooked on the massive barbecue pit, where he then progressed to supping beer on the log while putting the world to rights. A place that anyone who has ever lived on the compound will know and love and remember. It is, infamous, in that circle.
After that we headed to Al Abraaj for lunch, a place that sustained my husband through his late teen years. The only disappointment was that the shawarma plate that formed the basis of my husbands sustenance wasn’t available at lunchtime. So we ordered from the grill and it was delicious. Meats, hummus, breads, pickles.
Following on from this it was naptime, so we popped the toddler in the car seat and headed up to the Tree of Life. A place that my husband tried to take me to in 2010, however a little bit of boy racing later meant that we spun off the road with a burst tyre where we were rescued by the very boy racers that inspired the husband TO BE a boy racer as we had no clue on how to change a tyre. But I digress. This time we made it. The Tree of Life; a 400 year old tree that is the only major tree growing in the area.
After that we headed back to the hotel, via Jawads Supermarket (which in actual effect is now Waitrose) to pick up some cheese samsosas. Don’t knock them until you try them.
Then, it was pretty much time to head home. A short but sweet whistlestop tour down memory lane.