View of part of the Fujairah Corniche and the Hajar Mountains in the Background

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Experiencing Industrial Life in Fujairah

Coming into Fujairah from the Dubai entrance, if you take a right turn before you get to the Etisalat building (with the distinctive ‘golf ball’ on the top) you will enter one of the major industrial areas of the city. It is sandwiched between the main street and the airport.

This place is abuzz—certainly a hive of industry. Nothing flash, as you negotiate the enormous potholes on the road and dodge the approaching trucks. An amazing array of welders, carpenters, plumbers, mechanics—the whole range of trades.

This is a city within a city with its cafeterias, hair ‘saloons’ and other shops to provide service for the big population of workers.

You would be forgiven for thinking you are in the back blocks of Peshawar or Mumbai as you weave your way through this fascinating maze of work yards. For English speakers, it pays to take a translator, brush up on your Urdu or check on how to say ‘carburetor’ in Pitani.

There are no reception areas with secretaries or waiting rooms with magazines and drinking fountains. No accounts are issued, no receipts are given and you won’t be given a printout, itemizing all the service that has been done on your vehicle.

This area will never be a stopping place for tour buses but it is a superb place to experience the richness of Middle Eastern industrial life.

Geoff Pound

Image: The front yard of an auto spare parts business.