I woke up this morning to the CBS news anchor (Katie was off today) talking about Bobby Bowden retiring after winning the Gator Bowl...even here in Qatar this is news!
Once the plane landed in Qatar I was met by staff from a service who took me to a nice lounge where I enjoyed some of the local flavor (amazing dates, yummy little cookies, and assorted teas and coffee) while they took care of all of my customs paperwork and escorted me out of the airport. I was then met by Ameena and her husband and while driving from the airport to the hotel they provided me with a delightful tour of the city. For instance...did you know that an entire castle-like facility was built for Charles and Diana when they made their first official visit here? Ameena works with the Qatar Foundation who is sponsoring the LeaderShape Institute here in Qatar.
Also, even though it was past 11:00 p.m. local time I noticed many children out playing in a playground and lots of activitiy.
The weather was a little cool and quite breezy. From my understanding while I am here the weather should vary between 50 at night and 75 or so during the day.
...But let me go back to yesterday morning for a minute...have you ever had an English breakfast? Really this one isn't even a real one (no beans or tomato) Nonetheless, I took a picture of mine yesterday and have to ask...what's the deal with English sausage? Although I am sure there are many who really like it I have to say it is not my favorite. I've enclosed a picture for you so you can create your own opinion....
Ok, back to Qatar. This is a beautiful city and I have attached several pictures from my hotel window for your viewing pleasure. This is not where the Institue will be held -- we are travelling about 35 miles or so outside of Doha to the Al Sutan Beach Resort <http://www.alsultanbeachresort.com/>. The resort is located right on the Gulf. I realize that the locations for LeaderShape Institutes in the US vary a great deal but this one looks like it is absolutely beautiful....
Today I am meeting David (co-lead for LeaderShape) as well as Lindsay (another person from the Qatar Foundation). I am looking forward to reviewing the curriculumn with David and learning more about the students who will attend the institute. Also I am going to view more of the city today... I even get to see some camel racing.
Here in Doha I am 8 hours ahead of the US (EST time) -- with the stop in London I have actually adjusted quite well to the time so far....we'll see how that goes! Time to get the day started. More later