Being nostalgic

I hope that by now everyone knows which area they reside in as far as the lockdowns are concerned after the confusion of determining the area of Maidan Hawally. I have lived in Kuwait for over 50 years and witnessed the development of this beloved country – areas were expanded and new ones were created. For example, in the early 70s Jabriya was an empty land with very few Arabic style houses mostly adjacent to the current Fourth Ring Road; the same was for Rumaithiya.

I remember the main street of Kuwait City with elegant top class shops on both sides. I remember the market guards, who were appointed by the interior ministry to roam the streets of the city day and night to make sure the markets were secure.
At that time, there were areas called Hawally, Nugra and Maidan Hawally, and realignments throughout the years kept changing the boundaries until we reached the current situation. Nugra is remembered by a police station named after it, and Maidan Hawally has the same – a police station and a traffic department named after it as the area shrunk significantly as far as boundaries are concerned.

We the old generation are aware of areas when they are mentioned and have no problem with that, and I believe the confusion was with those who came to Kuwait in the 1990s and are familiar with the current situation only.
When the government news conference was broadcast and areas to be under lockdown were announced, many were worried and confused for not knowing where Maidan Hawally is, and some people asked me if it really exists. I do not blame them because their civil IDs read Salmiya – again it is realignment that caused this.

Life goes on, and changes do happen, and here it is very important for those who visit countries with plans to stay for some time to read about them and their laws, customs and what is right or wrong, because cultures differ from one place to another, so that they do not find themselves in violation of the law or customs.
Let this Maidan Hawally drama be an example and a call for all officials, citizens and expats that announcements should be as clear as possible to avoid confusion and misunderstanding.
Final word: “Nostalgia is the heart’s way of reminding you of something you one loved. It travels in many forms; on a song, in a scent or in photographs… but no matter how it comes to you it will always have the same bittersweet taste.”— Ranata Suzuki

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