Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

UAE- Celestial fireworks fail to light up desert sky  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Khaleej Times - 27/05/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Dubai residents throng desert to witness meteor storm but many leave disappointed

at 2am on friday night the otherwise deserted road leading up to bab al shams resort was clogged with a long queue of cars. usually a 50-minute drive reaching the resort from the heart of the city took two hours.

it seemed thousands of interested sky gazers of diverse nationalities knew the dubai astronomy group was convening at the resort at 9pm on friday until sunrise on saturday to spot the never-seen-before meteor storm called the may camelopardalids. the expected turnout was anywhere between 500 to 1500 but even by midnight the expected figure had been humbled. people were seen streaming in even after 4am some in obvious party-wear.

according to nasa this meteor storm would result “from the dust of periodic comet 209p/linear a jupiter family comet discovered by the lincoln laboratory near-earth asteroid research project in 2004”. some forecasters predicted the meteor storm to pelt more than 200 meteors per hour.

but even people who didn’t know the technicalities or even the basics of astronomy were headed out in the desert carrying it appeared everything from foldable chairs yoga mats and rugs flashlights thermoses of tea tripods cameras and telescopes. one man even brought a guitar. women in their nighties mothers pushing strollers men with toddlers perched on their shoulders — by all accounts it was a midnight picnic in the desert with plenty of laughter and shrieking in the air regardless of whether or not anyone actually saw a streak in the north sky.

a member of the dubai astronomy group told khaleej times on friday evening that while it was possible to see the meteor shower even from the outskirts of the city — out in the wilderness of jebel ali for instance — the desert would be a good spot just as long as from your chosen spot there was no light pollution (from buildings and street lights) and the sky was clear. the idea was to look northwards toward the pole star. all through the night till the wee hours of the morning people were heading out of the city to get a better view of the promised celestial fireworks.

empty spots were hard to come by at bab al shams resort on friday night as families waited for the sky to light up. — kt photo by shihab

as traffic crawled people got off from their vehicles and started walking along the road towards bab al shams. some decided to ditch the resort and lie on the roofs of their cars as and they pulled up at any suitable spot surrounded by wild grasses night creatures and the sound of crickets imprints of their car tyres upsetting the wind ripples on sand dunes. an suv even got its tyres stuck in a dune kicking up a dust cloud as the driver pressed on the engine to budge the vehicle back onto flat road.

the resort itself was fully booked with 100 per cent occupancy on the nights of may 23 and even may 24. people had booked in advance to make the best of the long weekend and scheduled celestial sighting. whether or not anyone glimpsed the meteor shower is another matter. at 3.15am strangers on the road were heard asking each other “saw anything?”

anisha ratwani an amateur star gazer refused to lie down on the sand dunes as she didn’t want to miss the shower in case it was a blink-and-you-miss-it-phenomenon. “i’m surprised at the crowds” said ratwani who one day wants to go see the northern lights. “i thought it wasn’t enough of a mainstream event. i didn’t hear anything about it. and when i asked my cousin if she wanted to come see a meteor shower she asked me where is it ‘playing’ — thinking it was a movie.”

but for many groups of people being in the desert for a couple of hours was quite adequate. several people made the miscalculation of expecting to see bright globular clusters as soon as they arrived set up their mats and looked upwards. but patience soon started wearing thin.

families especially the hordes who came with children had to assuage the moods of the young ones who tired of running around shrieking and playing games were reduced to sleepy repeated enquiries of the meteor shower.

at 2.30am an excited cry rang out. people got up craned their necks to see if anything was visible and some people claimed they saw something move. some cried false alarm. others munched on chips. people with bulky cameras and telescopic lenses clapped and camera flashes went off and laser torches zig-zagged in the sky. for the record not everyone who went into the desert and lay on the cool sand under a sky with some clear visible constellations necessarily managed to see this well-attended supposed event of a lifetime.

nivriti?khaleejtimes.com


 


Khaleej Times




  MENA News Headlines
 Dec 19 2014 - Int'l community responsible for protecting Palestinians: KuwaitArab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) GENEVA Dec 18 (KUNA): Kuwait's permanent delegate to the UN agencies in Geneva Ambassador Jamal Al-Ghunaim said Wednesday the international community needs to shoulder its legal ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Kuwait- Early diagnosis key to defeat breast cancerArab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) KUWAIT CITY Dec 18 (KUNA): Sheikha Hessa Saad Al- Abdullah Al-Sabah on Wednesday highlighted the importance of early detection in curbing the growth of various forms of cancer. ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Saudi- Host Maskan beats Nesma Inaya edges out Gilas 90-88Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Host team Maskan Arabia Co. brought down Nesma 105-92 while Inaya Medical College edged out S. Gilas 90-88 in the seventh week action in the 2nd Maskan Arabia Invitational ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Saudi- Faisaliah Team A and Courtyard Marriott triumph in Inter-Hotels Cricket eventArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Al Faisaliah Team A won its match against Riyadh Marriott while Al Faisaliah-Al Khozama combined Team B went down in defeat to Courtyard Marriott during Friday's matches in the ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Mathy powers to victory in Riyadh Wheelers 60km road raceArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) A new course used for the first time brought general approval from the 60 riders who signed on for the Riyadh Wheelers 60km road race and with no wind to bother the competitors ...

 Dec 19 2014 - SCTC ABTC-Taif ladies clash in finals Saudia Catering JRTC in ALBAIK Tennis semifinalsArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) SCTC and ABTC-Taif will dispute the Ladies Division HMX category finals after a grueling double round-robin while in the Men's Division LMX category four teams advanced to the ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Saudi- Hyundai Castrol takes third in 4th MYN 2014 JBL-Lifestylez tourneyArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Hyundai Castrol of Dennis Elmenzo beat Fuddruckers 72-53 to claim the third place in the 4th MYN Division at the Ahmed Mohammed Abdul Wahab Naghi Sports Complex in Ash Shati ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Saudi- Natco Desert Warriors win in JCA Money Gram CKB-T20Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) The Money Gram-sponsored Cricket Ke Badshah T20 Tournament for the year 2015 under the auspices of Saudi Cricket Center (SCC) took off to a rousing start with 28 teams entered in ...

 Dec 19 2014 - UN seeks 8.4bn to help Syrian victimsArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) BERLIN: The UN appealed Thursday for $8.4 billion to provide emergency aid and longer-term help to nearly 18 million people in Syria and across the region hit by the drawn-out ...

 Dec 19 2014 - Saudi- Nigeria sentences 54 soldiers to deathArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) ABUJA Nigeria: Nigeria has sentenced 54 soldiers to death for mutiny assault cowardice and refusing to fight extremists.The court-martial charges all were connected to the ...

more...


 






Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help