How Sheikh Mohammed prepared boats for pearl divers

 

How Sheikh Mohammed prepared boats for pearl divers

Dubai - "They say a leader should have a bird's-eye view of facts and truth about problems."

By Hisham Salah

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Published: Wed 30 Jan 2019, 5:40 PM

In the 17th chapter of his latest book, Qissati, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, talks about his memories of the sea. He recalls how he helped pack dates, dried beef and water for pearl divers. 
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I used to swim in the open sea with my friends. The sound of the sea and its smell are what I remember.
I have beautiful memories about us playing on the beach with our horses. I did not know the other side of the sea - the happiness and sorrow, the joy and pain.
The people of Dubai used to dive mainly in the summer, when the water is warm.
They could then dive several times to search for oysters, which contain precious pearls. The oysters are located in different depths.
My father used to send me to someone he trusted, a person called Abu Jaber. He was the director of a maritime fleet.
What I learnt from him was that sea life was very difficult. Our people faced many challenges and obstacles to make a living from it.
I was moved by the divers' spirits when they prepared for diving trips. I helped prepare the boats' supplies for the trips - dates, dried beef and water.
The team zeroed in on an area to search for the oysters, after which the diver closed his nose with a fish bone.
He then tied a rope around his neck before diving. Once he tugged on the rope, the man on the boat pulled him up.
Many deaths and tragic accidents have occurred during such trips.
They say a leader should have a bird's-eye view of facts and truth about problems.
I say that a human leader should stand on the ground, live with his people, experience their way of living and learn every detail about their sufferings, so he can change their lives for the better.
I learned that the sea is not only about sound and smell, but about a whole set of feelings, touching stories and memories of sadness and joy.
In what he is calling his "incomplete biography", His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has broken his latest book, Qissati (My Story), into 50 chapters, narrating 50 stories in his 50 years of serving the nation. Khaleej Times got a signed copy of the book from the Dubai Ruler and everyday, we will be featuring excerpts from each of the 50 chapters.


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