In the nothing to do department, I thought I’d share this scanned image with you people. This was a notice by the “British Representative” aka the Governor of Bahrain by Her Majesty the Queen of Britain, that time Bahrain being a British protectorate. Click on the thumbnail to see the whole page:
So let me translate what it says to you:
============ QUOTE =============
The Government of Bahrain
We publish this notice to bring to your attention The Government of Bahrain’s Notice number 1350-21 dated 17 Jumada Al-Thani of the year 1355 (Hijri) (corresponding to 4th September 1936)
1. All practicing whores are ordered to live only in designated areas and they are not allowed to live in the respectable neighbourhoods of Manama or Muharraq.
2. The neighbourhoods assigned to practicing whores are Qibla in Manama and Garandole in Muharraq.
3. Home owners in the respectable areas are fully responsible in front of the Courts should they allow practicing whores to live in their houses or use their houses for gambling activities.
4. If after one month from the date of this Notice any practicing whore is found staying in the respectable areas and has not moved to the designated red-light districts shall be punished in Court.
5. Any foreign whore who disregards this Notice will be extradited from Bahrain.
Issued on 27 Thu-Al-Qi’dah, 1355
Corresponding to 8th February, 1937
============= END QUOTE =============
This “situation” existed until the early or mid-1970’s and then both areas were shut down. I was too young to remember it, but as my dad owned a stationary/bookshop at that time, I do remember an “investigative” report by one of the weekly magazines – I think Sada Al-Isbou, it might have been another magazine, bit fuzzy there where they talked about the red-light district in Bahrain. I remember asking dad about what “Garandole” means and got a slap for my trouble!
At the same time, we used to sell Playboy and Penthouse and the Gulf Daily News actually had a page 3 topless girl in there!
Needless to say, we don’t have any of this sort of thing happening in Bahrain now. None at all. Just underground activities with lots and lots of AIDS cases which everyone ignores.
I’ve even read a few weeks ago of an AIDS infected man who was refused treatment at the emergency in Salmania Medical Centre and that his own family refused to pick him up! He was reported to have made a nuisance of himself though.. soiling himself and attacking doctors and nurses. No idea if that is true.
Anyway, thought I’d share with you this picture that I came across a few days ago when re-organising my computer!