Skip links

Memories from the past

Enjoy some snippets of people’s memories from the old days

The traditional wedding in the houses …The buying of fabric for friends and family …choosing goats and camels… the animals in pens by the house waiting for slaughter..traditional food distributed for 3 days…The zehiba party …displaying jewellery n suitcases prepared for bride ..showing genorisity of grooms family..excitement of neighbours old and young…preparing bride for 1 week…pasting her with ‘neal’ blue chalk which is used to whiten clothes ….keeping her indoors to whiten her ….inspection of body by elders….party was a really happy simple occasion, not showy like today …and many such traditions of the simple bedouin wedding.
I remember the al Ain ones to be the best. What great humble generous people. They had little but gave a lot. (Alia, Dubai)

We used to get lots more rain. I remember having to pick my kids up as the school closed because of the rain and I had to wade through the water and my boots being filled with water. I had to carry the children out. (Salma, Sharjah)

When I was at primary school in the 70s, it often rained so much that the whole area was flooded and we couldn’t go to school. (Rashid, Central Region)

We lived in a small town near a British training camp. We didn’t have electricity or running water.  There was a big tank at the camp and we could collect water from there. There was also a fallaj running from the Shaikh’s land and we used to play in it. (Mohammed, Manama, Ajman)

I remember when  the Trade Centre was the biggest and brightest building on Shaikh Zayed  road. My children used to call it the fairy princess castle as the lights used to shine between all the others buildings. Now there are too many castles to choose from, each one brighter. I still call trade centre the princess castle. Nothing replaces that fond memory. (Salma, Sharjah)

In the old days you could drive from Safa Park to Karama any time of the day in just ten minutes. (Salma, Sharjah)

I remember when we first got tv and when the man came on to read the news my grandmother covered her face. And when we watched a movie on tv she would shout, ‘watch out, he’s behind you with a knife!’ (Salman, Abu Dhabi)

We didn’t have electricity or water until I was about seven. We lived in a small house which was just one room. We all slept in it. And we were all born in that house. (Hamid, Manama)

When I first moved to Dubai in the 90s, I lived in one of the few towers on Shaikh Zayed Rd. My living room looked out the back and it was just empty. We could only see Zaabeel Palace. Sometimes you could see camels off in the distance. That area is now completely built up with towers, Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa and Downtown Dubai. (Aisha, Dubai)

I remember camels just wandering amongst the villas in Dubai. And there was a Bedu man who came every Ramadan and set up camp near our house with all his camels. (Mel, Dubai)

Shaikh Zayed Rd was just two lanes and we could walk across to get to the Metropolitan hotel with hardly any cars around. (Mel, Dubai)

Leave a comment