Smoked out

Dubai’s transformation from smokers’ paradise to California style smoking restrictions is continuing apace.
Now that smoking’s banned in malls, shopping is much more enjoyable – apparently the ban was applied to restaurants in November. This passed me by at the time, but it’s also great news. It has also been extended to hotels, according to this article. It may even be applied to bars and pubs.
Our swimming pool has had ‘no smoking’ signs put up near the loungers. I was astonished by this – it’s an outdoor area, after all. That said, it’ll be much nicer if people don’t smoke there.
I do feel a bit sorry for Marlboro Marwan and Srini Silk Cut – 6 months ago they could happily smoke everywhere and now they can’t. I’d have expected the new laws to restrict smoking to defined smoking areas rather than to implement an outright ban, particularly considering the number of smokers here. That said, you probably have to go for one thing or the other to make it workable.
The speed of the change is incredible, as with most things in Dubai. Not so long ago we were sitting in the non-smoking area of a restaurant, surrounded by smokers. When we asked why so many people were smoking in the non-smoking section we were just told that they had to sit there and smoke as the smoking section had filled up. On another occasion, when asking to be seated in the non-smoking area, the waiter brought us to our table and simply removed the ashtray.

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2 Responses to “Smoked out”

  1. Fourth Breakfast Says:

    I am amazed how much of a mental shift has occurred to me after ~10 years of California smokefree environments. I was at an Indiana restaurant and the host asked me if I wanted smoking or non-smoking. I couldn’t fathom what he was talking about. Smoking what?? Ah. Smoking section. Different when you’re out of the country and expect it.
    Separate note: finally got my Wii after 7 months of trying! I love boxing!

  2. Fourth Breakfast Says:

    I am amazed how much of a mental shift has occurred to me after ~10 years of California smokefree environments. I was at an Indiana restaurant and the host asked me if I wanted smoking or non-smoking. I couldn’t fathom what he was talking about. Smoking what?? Ah. Smoking section. Different when you’re out of the country and expect it.
    Separate note: finally got my Wii after 7 months of trying! I love boxing!

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