It’s been almost five years since I moved to Qatar, and it’s getting hard to remember my first impressions of the place – something I need to do for an upcoming piece I’m writing.
But I do recall being surprised that so many American fast food eateries have set up shop here. The stark class divisions, crazy traffic and sweltering heat also threw me off balance.
On the positive side, I loved that malls contained supermarkets – and bonus – they stayed open until midnight! The low crime rate and family-friendly environment were also welcome changes from the US, where maintaining a work-life balance is much more difficult.
Qatar has transformed over the years, and whether it was getting used to speed cameras at every signal or Sunday being a workday, all of us – expats and nationals alike – have had to make adjustments here.
What were your first impressions of Doha? What surprised you about this place? Please share your stories!