Arabs – and Bahrainis – are well-known for setting up a majlis (meeting place) almost anywhere, especially in their homes – where men gather over the sheesha (water pipe), cups of Arabic tea and coffee and endless gossip. But this majlis I saw while on my usual “trip with the camera” takes the cake!
In one of the most secluded areas on the Muharraq coast, where no one would ordinarily go, was a ramshackle and disused dhow that had been converted into a floating meeting place. It had a proper ‘pathway’, a veranda, a courtyard and all those things that would make a group of men feel comfortable.
A very large television and a mini kitchen complete with tea-making utensils and gadgets was also there, making it perhaps one of the most “well-equipped” ramshackle structures I have seen.
What did not, however, make sense was the place was very untidy and unkempt, more like an unruly bachelors’ pad and not a place where grown up men could hang out and have a discussion.
The idea is brilliant but there is a question mark over its implementation. Perhaps I will go back there one day and have a chat with the owner!