Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Bye Big Bike! (with Update)

"Darrajah" (Bicicleta) by Pepe Cabrera, January 7, 2010.

I just saw the Saudi Gazette news on the internet today about the world's largest bicycle here in Jeddah. The iconic landmark will soon be taken down to give way for a new overpass. In fact, there are yellow fences already in place around the roundabout where the big bike is located, as you can see in the photo below which I took a week ago.

Photo of the big bike with yellow fence around roundabout. September 10, 2013.

I often pass by this iconic structure for more than 10 years now, in fact my apartment is just a stone throw away from it. The bicycle is at a roundabout on Rawdah and Sitteen streets intersection. I hope the government would have a change of mind and at least transfer the bicycle to a new location here in Jeddah. It's a shame that they are demolishing this iconic landmark. Bye Big Bike!

"Dusk at Dawara Darrajah"  January 6, 2010.

Trivia: The Bike is 15 meters high and was created using scrap metal. It's  by Julio Lafuente, a Spanish artist.

Update - December 31, 2013

It seems like the big bike is here to stay after all, according to pictures which hang around the construction site like the one you see below. Great.

I took this photo of one of the pictures from inside my car.

Close up look shows the giant bike is incorporated in the final plan.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

In My Opinion: The Possible US Strike on Syria

I was supposed to blog about the 'leche flan' that I made the other day, but weird as it sounds, could my leche flan be of more significant than the current tension that is happening now here in the Middle East? I'm talking about the possible US strike on Syria. As an expat here in Saudi Arabia for over ten years, and a born again Christian at that who is familiar with some Biblical prophecies, I'm not anymore shocked about the news, in fact, it's eagerly anticipated, at least for me.

I believe that the US strike on Syria could possibly become a proxy war between different Middle Eastern countries. We all know that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, (a Sunni Muslim) and the Islamic Republic of Iran (a Shia Muslim) are arch-enemies (as both love to battle in unending word war). Iran and the Muslim world at large want to obliterate Israel from the the face of the earth - though only the former brazenly expresses so. Russia and China have always been  allies of Syria from the start.  And not to mention the instability in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan could also contribute to  triggering the World War 3.

I'm against the US strike on Syria, but honestly, the thought of it excites me in a way because of the end time prophecies in the Bible and the second coming of our Lord Yahoshua. Everything that is happening right now in our world (wars, famine, earthquakes and the increase of wickedness) had been prophesied before in Daniel, Ezekiel, Revelations; and Yahoshua said in Matthew 24:6:

"You will hear of wars and rumors of wars,
but see to it that you are not alarmed.
Such things must happen,
but the end is still to come."  

A lot of questions come up in my mind every time I think about the situation, like, what will happen to me if the war in Syria spilled over to Saudi Arabia and a full blown war broke out in the entire Middle East? How about the other 3 Million Filipino expats in the Middle East? Can my government afford to repatriate all 3 Million of us? And how about my family back home, will they be affected too? (That's actually the Devil trying to mess up with my mind and injecting me with fear.)

Every time there is unrest in the Muslim world, Christians have always been a natural collateral damage as the chaos precipitates into a war on the 'infidels' - as Egypt epitomizes. It scares me sometimes when I think about what the consequences might be, but then again, I'm not like the heathen anymore as the Bible says, whose concerns are the material things on earth rather than putting their trust on the only true God. I have to fix my eyes on things which are unseen, rather than the physical things. I'm a new creation now, I should not be afraid of anything, God is in control. I just have to put my trust on Yahweh. And in this time of uncertainties, what a relief and comfort to ponder on God's promises in Psalms 91!

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”

Surely he will save you
from the fowler’s snare
and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.