Just hit the middle east for the first time. Doha looks like a hamlet from above – albeit a very wealthy one with the highest GDP in the universe. In which case I’d have thought they could treat themselves to a few pavements here and there but but the (aircon) car rules ok. It is a bit bonkers to walk around in 44 degrees but I thought it’d be a tad cooler at night. Nay nay…welcome to the furnace. The strolling about ends tm.

I had more anxiety about what to wear than a prom queen princess but it seems ok, plenty of variation going on. No shortage of sand or hommous though I would’ve killed for a cold beer. Anything of vol. is relegated to a few hotels – I booked a table at a particular bar and had to pledge to spend a minimum amount and refrain from getting drunk. That’ll be an interesting achievement, I’ll have to observe how everyone else manages (glass of Cristal with caviar on the side?) I’d love to be a fly on the wall to see how 40 000 lobster-red footie fans cope when the World Cup comes around!

Doha smells good: dried cloves and apple smoke.