Six hobbies you never thought you’d have until you moved to Doha

Have your favourite pastimes changed since moved here? We’re not talking brunch...

Six hobbies you never thought you’d have until you moved to Doha

It is easy to convince yourself you are going to take up a new hobby. Full moon paddleboarding, inspirational team sports, adventurous dining – you know the type of things. Reality is, however, that you already have more hobbies than you realised. Including some you don’t even know about.

1 Plushflushing
The toilet cubicles alone in some of the city’s swankier hotels are larger than our first apartment. And don’t get us started on the palatial washrooms – complete with multiple hand creams and lotions, chandeliers and complicated lighting, lavish furnishings and hand driers that seem to have come from the future. Plushflushing is going out of your way to take a trip to the bathroom in a fancy hotel just to see how extravagant the loos are.

2 Dunoing
The desert dunes are beautiful and epic. And nearly always empty. Despite this city residents promise that they will take up sandboarding or do more 4x4 driving in the dunes. But few of us follow up on that. The hobby of “dunoing” (pronounced dune-oing) comes from times you tell yourself “do you know, I think I might go camping this weekend” but really lie on the sofa and watch Netflix until you fall asleep. At 2pm.

3 Stockmiling
The pursuit of taking trips based entirely on the number of air miles it will earn you. The moment travel became a status symbol is when you became less interested in the destination and utterly obsessed with how many air miles you have and ruthless about collecting more.

4 Mallwalking
The number of times you have hiked in the mountains so far this year is probably zero, right? Yet the number of times you have done laps around the mall without any intention of buying something (food court doesn’t count) is probably double figures.

5 Plantsaving
It is overly ambitious to call your balcony box a garden, but you do have a few plants out there. Likewise, what you do to them isn’t really gardening. It is remembering (sometimes) to give them just enough water that they seem like they’re surviving. At some point you will convince yourself that it is as much of a skill to bring a plant back from near death by neglect as it is to look after them properly.

6 ACtivism
Not to be confused with climate change, climate control this is the name for the passive aggressive game you have played over your office A/C unit for the past couple of years. You put it up/down a degree or two to the correct level and somebody turns it back down/up a few hours later. And so the dance continues…

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