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Sandstorms and Saudi Spring in Jeddah

dust storm sandstorm in Jeddah Saudi Arabia blazing sun

The photos above have not been taken using any effect sepia or otherwise.

Spring is starting to rear its pretty head, adorned with sweet garlands, and warmed by bursts of sunshine and mild showers; it is often considered to be a pleasant season with buds beginning to bloom, and the harsh winter giving way to milder days at least, in some parts of the world.

In Jeddah, however, spring usually means only one thing: Sandstorms- lots of them and dry weather. For the past few weeks Jeddah has been engulfed in dust. Woe to all housekeepers ,cleaners and dust allergy sufferers. Everyday I wake up with smell of dust, and feeling that my sinuses as parched as the desert ground.

Some days dust just envelops the whole atmoshphere, other days there’s a proper dust storm and the sky turns a depressing yellow, while the wind howls eerily among the urban buildings rattling windows and dish antennaes in urgent protest. Resenting the barriers,and trying to sneak in, the wind is  not content with spreading dust and debris on every outdoor surface. The sun turns into a giant hazy ball, like a lone but large dim bulb casting a depressing sepia hue. You can feel the grit and dust as you shuffle along head bent and you realise how essential covering your face can be in this climate.

saudi man covering his face in a sandstorm

(Whenever I see the Saudi Shabab with their Afros in this weather I’m always think that if I throw them in a convertible Caddilac and add some januty Seventies music–you’d have the perfect setting for a Seventies movie 😛 – oh and the low rise pants would have to be exchanged for tight flares 😛 I’m sure there is a Barbican TV ad that shows something like this)

Here’s to hoping for light rain, just enough to clear the atmoshpere of all this dust but not enough for a flash flood.

One thought on “Sandstorms and Saudi Spring in Jeddah

  1. Nice pics, sandstorms are a nuisance but they make sure we don't forget that our cities maybe modern they are still in the middle of the desert ..

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