I’ll show you mine, so show me yours!

Christmas presents

Christmas presents, originally uploaded by malyousif.

YES! I got this fantastic coal-burning, adjustable tray, multi-level grill BBQ as my Christmas present! I am so happy, especially that the BBQ season is almost upon us, and the old one has disintegrated with rust.

Me happy boy 🙂


  1. nomadic arab

    nice! grill in bahrain – not used to seeing many of those here. oh how i crave some good grilled food..


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  3. tooners

    ooohhh, really nice! the hubby would LOVE something like this…. especially seeing that it’s coal burning. i’m not sure that i’ve ever seen one so big that burns coal. nice!

    ho ho ho

  4. Adel

    In Bahrain most people don’t go with this fancy stuff. A tin box filled with coal is more than enough.

  5. Bandargate

    Looks like a nice one, but I still prefer the traditional Bahraini one! You can get it from the traditional souq in different sizes, with prices ranging from 1 to 4 Dinars. I usually mount it on a table and fix a fan next to it. If you went to the Haddad, he could make a special design for you for a resonable price too.

  6. Graham Hill

    OK, so you’ve got the BBQ and you’ve got the gingerbread cookies, may I make a suggestion on where the next bloggers meeting is??? :rolleyes:

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    Bandargate and Adel, I agree that you can get very fancy “manqalas” for very little and they would last for a long time. I like those too. But with these you can cook many things that you can’t easily do with traditional grills – baked potatoes, chicken, fish in foil, burgers, and many others.

    Plus these things look good in their special corner by the pool!

    Graham, that would be a good idea wouldn’t it? Let me get back to you on the actual date though… 😉

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    Oh and the cookies have disappeared. We’ve had some friends over last night and some brought their children too. Arif invited some friends too who made a beeline for the food spread and the image I had in my mind when I saw them swarming was much like hungry locusts on a green field!

    Nevertheless, it was an excellent and enjoyable night.

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  10. Christmas Holly

    Wishing you sugar and spice and all things nice..

    MERRY CHRISTMAS Mahmood and Frances, sorry I couldn’t make it. Next time Inshallah…

    May the coming year be a successful year for all of us.

    All the best,


  11. Richy

    Merry Xmas..

    I got my gas barbecue from Switerland… but where can I now buy some gas cans ? The ones at my home ar too big and the ones in shops such as Geant are for camping only.

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    Richy you could probably get the cylinder from Nader or Bahrain Gas. Give them a call and take a sample (or measurements) with you.

    Nancy, thanks and same to you and yours. Next time hopefully.

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    Who said anything about Christmas being a Muslim celebration or not? What you initially said was

    Muslims don’t celebrate X-Mas.

    which I disagreed with you as some Muslims DO celebrate Christmas. I for instance do, and have done for a long time.

    Your assertion that Christmas is not a Muslim celebration is also open to question; with Christmas being the celebration of the birth of the good prophet Isa (Jesus) whom Islam recognises, then celebrating his birth, just as the celebration of the birth of prophet Mohammed, is not only condoned, but celebrated.

    If you have any problem with either, then that is decidedly your problem, not ours, and you shouldn’t force your views on others, especially as your views in this particular case are incorrect, apart from them being prejudicial.

  14. Anonymous

    Defensive aren’t we. All I’m saying is, Christmas is not a Muslim holiday and altashabuh bil gharb is an insult to your own Muslim traditions. Christmas trees and turkey dinners/lunches and Christmas presents aren’t part of our tradition and when you adopt a tradition that is not yours then what does that tell others? That you are copying a tradition that isn’t even yours to begin with?

    It pisses me off to see more and more Bahrainis doing these things and running away from what makes us Bahrainis – our culture and traditions.

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  16. Anonymous

    You are having a serious identity crisis, that’s all I can say. Eid mubarak to you.

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    Says you! Hah!

    I’m very comfortable within my own skin, thanks a lot for asking; and celebrating Christmas does not shake my belief in who I am or which culture I belong to. It actually make my beliefs even stronger.

    Not so you. Even seeing others enjoying what you deem to be a foreign celebration shakes your beliefs to the core. How sad and shallow are those beliefs?

    Oh well, let me also wish you a Happy New Year, on top of wishing you a wonderful Merry Christmas and Happy Hannukah too.

    See how much I love you?

  18. Redbelt


    I still prefer my rust Manqala
    Just throw a tiny “clean” net grill on top and you can cook whatever (and make tea too!).
    Cheesburger with sand and ash. YUM!

  19. Anonymous

    There’s no need to turn mean Mahmood. It’s merely a discussion and if the ‘identity crisis’ was perceived as a personal attack then I take it back. But there’s no need to be nasty and comment on my beliefs.

    You preach freedom of internet speech and yet snap back when a discussion is stirred.

    Plus if you’re so comfortable in your own skin, stop justifying!

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    Ah, so it’s all right for you to attack and imply that I am a non-Muslim or kafir, but when I call you to the plate I am mean?

    No my friend. I suggest that you examine your stances your perception of tolerance – which you amply demonstrated that you have none – and the exercise of “free speech” simply to try to impeach those you do not agree with.

    Further, if it’s too hot for you, get out of the kitchen, or at least engage only in conversations you already know the end results of. A discussion; however, is an engagement of conversation the purpose of is reaching understanding, rather than imposing a preconceived position that if the others do not agree with then you label them with unsavoury terms.

    Going back to the initial point: it is not up to you or anyone else to decide what or how Muslims celebrate social or religious occasions, nor is it up to you to decide what is correct, or at least, you should not impose your personal view of “correct” on others.

  21. X-mas celebrating muslim

    Hey Playa-hater-anonymous guy, I’m a muslim and I celebrate x-mas. Why the hell shouldn’t I celebrate it? If you’re such the ‘traditionalist’, then why are you even on the internet? Is that electricity you’re using to power your computer? Get outta here!

    Guess who else celebrates x-mas? This guy right here . . . 🙂 look at him, with that santa hat. He’s a muslim smiley face who celebrates x-mas with his hot muslim wife Mooza :-X . She lets her hair down every x-mas. Here’s you 😡 celebrating x-mas. You’re not as cool as me 😎 , but you’ll get there one day when you get your head out of your a$$ honkus. hahahahahahhahhahah! Merry x-mas you flippn’ freak!

  22. billT

    God will judge us all in the end without your input Anon. Just live your life and let others live theirs without judgment. Mele Kalikimaka

  23. can we talk

    my my aren’t we selective…

    “altashabuh bil gharb ” includes christmas but does not include speaking foreign languages, studying abroad, dressing in clothes designed by foreign companies? actually Christmas did not come from “algharb”, it came from our part of the world, and then they took it from “alsharq”!!

    life is short, and we should look for any occasion to celebrate it and be happy.. I have at various times celebrated Eid and Christmas and Diwali and Easter and the New Year and the Chinese New Year and Guy Fawkes day and the fourth of July and St Jean Baptiste day and Thanksgiving and birthdays and anniversaries and anything else there is to celebrate.. why not?

    I’ve prayed in a mosque and in church and the experience was just as amazing..
    it is not a question of “tashabbuh”, it is a question of celebrating the life God gave us, sharing with others, and being grateful for the people and the blessings that make our lives so special!

    Merry Christmas, Happy Eid, Happy Hannukah, Happy New Year to everyone!

  24. bint battuta

    it is not a question of “tashabbuh”, it is a question of celebrating the life God gave us, sharing with others, and being grateful for the people and the blessings that make our lives so special!

    can we talk – nicely put! and i posted on my blog yesterday about some of my bahraini friends visiting church; i don’t think any of them have an “identity crisis”, whatever that means. they are just open to learning about other faiths, just as many “westerners” want to learn about islam. surely being open to different beliefs is an indication of strength and confidence in one’s own identity, not the opposite?

  25. Anonymous

    Who said kafir? Who said non-muslim? I merely said these are not our traditions period. Don’t get so paranoid – all of you.

    Thanks for the others who contributed with comments as they were eye-openers. Especially x-mas celebrating muslim which eloquently equated that althashabuh avoids technology retardation and I should crawl back under some rock. Well said.

    Mahmood, take a chill pill.

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  28. Maverick

    M. Nice Barby man. But remember it is not the size of the tool but how you use it. 😆 😆 😆

    In any case have a wonderful Xmas with your loved ones and may your health and wealth increase along with your joy and peace of mind.

    Your blog has given many of us a forum and space to rant and rave along with you anonymously. Rather than keeping things on our chest we can speak out freely. Thnaks again for this wonderful blog.

    By the way if you like to smoke meat or fish, the barby you have is fine but you will need a tall cylindrical smoking type that is also available in Bahrain as smoking needs sufficitnet distance between the coals and itme being smoked.

    One Dr. Friend of mine told me of another friend of his who use a tikka skewer to string up some cleaned sardines through their heads and hung it over an tin barby and smoked them using saw dust…another economical way to get things done. Jamie Oliver does this using salmon fish covered in herbs and newspaper soaked in water thrown over hot coals.

    Sweet chilli jam is good with barbied meat and fish…..saute seeded chopped sweet red or green chillies with onions, ginger, garlic, sugar, salt, lemon juice, water and pepper, yum yum…

  29. AJJ

    Being a solstace child, I think you have all missed the point of Christmas. It is a party to celebrate the mid point of the Solar year when the sun starts to ascend again from its winter gloom. It has been hi jacked by nearly all organised religions to combine a good party with religious brain washing, or by other religious brainwashers to denounce faiths of another kind.

    Lets just enjoy the party.

  30. Maverick

    Being a solstace child, I think you have all missed the point of Christmas. It is a party to celebrate the mid point of the Solar year when the sun starts to ascend again from its winter gloom. It has been hi jacked by nearly all organised religions to combine a good party with religious brain washing, or by other religious brainwashers to denounce faiths of another kind.

    Lets just enjoy the party.

    No another Dan Brown supporter!? 😆 😆 😆 😎

  31. can we talk

    “I think you have all missed the point of Christmas”

    the point is what you make of it

  32. billT

    What makes a great BBQ is a old water heater. Strip everything off the tank, cut it in half, weld some legs and hinges on it and you have a great BBQ. The steel of the tank is much thicker than a 55 gal barrel.

  33. Maverick

    Can we talk is right…..it is what we make of it whilst we reminesce and ponder on the compassionate teachings of Jesus…to forgive completely, to give generously, to love unconditionaly, to help those who need it, and to not point finger at someone whilst we are at fault but most importantly not to stand for injustice, bigotry and flasehood. That is what Mahmood is doing day in and day out by his daily musings. He is setting an example for us, inspiring us, egging us on to join hands and do the right thing.

  34. Jett

    Nice grill Mahmood! I would send a picture of my new bbq monster but I am not sure how to on here. However..if you ever need great BBQ sauces let me know. I live near Kansas City which is a town built around great bbq. I am eagerly awaiting spring when I can get back outside to use mine.

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    billT, what an excellent idea! I have a friend who actually did use a 55 gallon drum cut in half for his initial BBQ, now that he moved into a new house, his wife bought it a humungous gas-fired BBQ behemoth and I’m waiting to be invited to sample its produce!

    The thing is with BBQs, it’s the friends around the fire that makes it happen, rather than the equipment, people even just dig a hole in the ground and fill it with wood or coal to make a pit, but the “proper” equipment certainly help, if at least in providing another topic of conversation!

  36. billT

    Your right, a nice bed of Kiawe (Mesquite on the mainland) wood, some fresh caught Ono along with well marinated Teriyaki style chicken and some good country style ribs. Add some good friends and cheap beer. I have to watch it with the cheap beer though as my mustach seems to be extremely flamible and gives my daughter endless fond memories.

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  38. Sadek

    “altashabuh bil gharb is an insult to your own Muslim traditions”. Lighten up, my kids enjoy a double whammy, they get a present for christmas and an addeya for Eid. Anyway, from what I read Father Christmas, you know the old gentleman wearing red and who went around four days ago with his sled, is a Disney or Coca Cola creation, and Jesus was born sometime in March or April. But since we are talking about tashabuh maybe we should cancel New Year, Labour Day, National Day and even Moulid Al Nabi.
    Please lets stop suffering from narrow mindness.

  39. Sadek

    “an insult to your own Muslim traditions”.
    One last point: It’s the same argument which a neighbour to the west uses for not allowing women to drive – its against our Muslim traditions ! Please stop sticking everything on our religion – all you are doing is debasing it with all this tahrif.

    “Who said kafir? Who said non-muslim? I merely said these are not our traditions period……althashabuh avoids technology retardation and I should crawl back under some rock” – I liked the way you dropped belatedly the word “Muslim”. But were you not implying exactly that?

  40. Meggie

    Hope you and the family got all the best presents from Santie Claus Mahmood. My two cats received lovingly wrapped Christmas stockings full of kitty treats and elaborate toys. They are still playing with the wrapping paper, and ignoring the contents.
    Our own present was a lovely quilted featherbed, made of duck feathers and down. Got it online. It’s grand, you climb in and just melt into it. Trouble is, you really don’t want to get up in the mornings…

    Well, the New Year is almost upon us, and to those of us in the Frozen North (of England) that means just one thing- Scotch Broth. Stock (from bacon bones, ham stock, or vegetable stock as preferred), dried split peas, red lentils, pearl barley, plenty of leeks, carrots and spuds. Salt and pepper to taste.
    No quantities needed, no measurin, just hoy it all in. Then get it down yer neck with some crusty bread for dunking. T’will do you no end of good.

    Also, for our new friend Anon, some rattlesnake stock, with plenty of dates, plus some wood shavings, iron filings, ground glass, paracetamol (to taste) and a large pinch of drain cleaner (very important). Then you take a litre of boiling water and pour it over your head. T’will do me no end of good…


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