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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Global Swine Flu Scare Claims First U.A.E Victim


Today I went on one of my Beer, Bacon and Tobacco (BBT) runs to Spinney's near the Corniche in town. If you recall, Spinneys is a supermarket catering to Western expats and coveniently has a liquor store in their building with a separate entrance. The supermarket is also one of the few pork outlets in the Emirate. There is a separate room at the back of the market separated from the rest of the sales floor by sliding glass doors. Inside you will find all of Oscar Meyers' finest processed porcine delights being eagerly snapped-up by British and Filipino expat customers. 

Down to my last 4 strips of bacon and totally out of ham slices for my sandwiches, I was going to stock up.  Just as I rounded the cheese display on the way to the Pork Room, I saw something that deflated my usually high spirits.  The pork room was dark and there were signs all over the locked doors saying it was closed indefinately. I was puzzled by this as it had never been closed before and it has to be a huge profit center for the store and it wasn't a Muslim holiday that I knew of. Oh well, I went about my business and figured it was just another "one of those things" that have to be dealt with in living over here.

It wasn't until driving back to the apartment and listening a BBC World News report about swine flu on the car radio that it hit me that this is the reason the Pork Room was closed! This is really bad news as the local culture of my host country consider pork as unclean and is already skittish about pork sales here. This new development may give them cause to permanently suspend pork sales in a "I told you so" stance. Looks like it's gonna be a long time between porkchops for me and I am here to tell you that turkey bacon substitutes suck!

I certainly hope a Beer Flu never materializes which would cause the local government to rethink suds availability in this land. Then I would be in real trouble! On second thought, I think I have had Beer Flu on more than a few occasions upon awakening in the morning. It usually went away after a few hours though.

On another note, it was 44C (111F) degrees here today so Summer has definately arrived and it's not even May yet. The Jeep has removable plastic panels for the roof which are unfortunately not insulated underneath. It is uncomfortable to put your hand on the underside of the roof for more than a few seconds while in the car and this compromises the A/C efficiency. At a stop light or in slow traffic you can feel the heat radiating from the roof onto your head and shoulders. I will plan a project to remedy that soon with some foam rubber and velcro, redneck style! 

As for the swine flu, avoid large crowds, wash your hands frequently and drink copius amount of adult beverages.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ha! Had the same thing happen to me at Abella's. I almost cried, no bacon! I exclaimed to my wife "Hope they don't have an alcohol flu any time soon". Cheers brother.