Khalifa International Stadium Inauguration

Qatar_2022_bid_logo.svgOn 19th May 2017, I have give a chance to witness and experience the inauguration of the Khalifa International Stadium. The stadium hosted the final of the 2017 Emir Cup between Al Rayyan and Al Sadd on a Friday evening.

The Stadium was originally constructed in 1976 and has hosted the Gulf Cup on two occasions, as well as the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 1995, the 2006 Doha Asian Games, the 2011 AFC Asian Cup final and many other international friendly matches.  The remodeled stadium which seats more than 40,000 spectators will host matches through to the quarter-finals of the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™.

As expected I experienced heavy traffic going to the area, Qatar is a football nation and many local fans are pouring into the stadium. The allocated parking space is a bit far but it is not an issue still many comes and still coming.

As I approach the stadium, it give me the chills as I heard the peoples chants and the cool air breeze coming from the stadium. The lighting is spectacular…. it has been said that it boasts an ultra-modern shape and dual arches that represent continuity and embracing fans from all over the globe!

Security is in place and ground staff are great! it is a breeze going to ticketing and entering to the stadium. Stadium is almost full….. with crowds cheering and very happy. The first thing I noticed inside the stadium is the temperature….. you can definitely feel the state of the art cooling technology at work!

Of course it is a work in progress… Qatar is learning and improving by experience. The stadium is no yet 100 percent complete. You can still notice construction debris in some areas, and some areas of the stadium is still closed or still under construction. But this does not obstruct in anyway the great stadium experience I had. Definitely the stadium will be much better, improved and will give everyone a great stadium experience. Qatar is committed to deliver an amazing football experience… I believe it will be done…. there a lot of other beautiful and amazing things to come. Qatar is true to its word – Expect Amazing!

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Areal View of the Khalifa International Stadium 

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Security and ambulances on standby

How Long Should I Work Abroad?

Pinoy Pop

Data From Wikipedia

They say that there is about 10 million Filipinos abroad and about 200 Thousand Filipinos in Qatar and it is growing.

I have previously set a time frame for myself for working abroad. At first I set it at 5 years, then recently I have moved it by another 5 years and probably I will move it again.

I have a chance to meet Mr. Vince Rapisura on one of the Financial Literacy program here in Doha and in his lecture he asked us this Question – How Long Should I Work Abroad?…. This question has been in my mind for so long and I really do not know the answer. One thing in my mind is – I WANT TO GO HOME!

Vince called us OFW’s in the Middle East as an economic migrants – this means we go abroad to find job and help us financially to fund our dreams – house, car, children’s education, savings etc. He mentioned that the maximum number of years for economic migration is 10 years. Wow… I am already in my 9th year this means I should have one more year.

He also discuss the 3 stages of economic migration:

  1. The Beginning – 1 to 2 years – This stage an OFW pays off his debts.
  2. Medium Term – 2 to 3 years – This stage provides needs of the Family.
  3. Long Term – 3 to 5 years – This stage where the OFW saves for financial goals/dreams.

He also provide tips/suggestion for an OFW to go home early or on time as describe above as are follows:

  • Family to talk, agree and set clear financial goals.
  • Check and watch out all expenses.
  • It is better that all basic need such water, electricity, food should be taken from the income in the Philippines.
  • For the dreams such as children’s tuition, house, car, business should come from income abroad.
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Recommended Maximum Economic Migration is 10 Years

This should result to family’s lifestyle will be controlled and will not go out of hand. This is usually the case of an OFW family where the remittance provided every month were expended and usually end with minimal or no savings. This results to increase in lifestyle and the migration process were extended.

You can watch his video about this on YouTube – Usapang Pera S01E06 Working Abroad. If you want to know about Vince, try googling his name or you can read all about him. You can also go to his website – http://vincerapisura.com/who-is-vince/.

I believe that Vince is correct. It is up to us if we want to go home and be with our family and friends as soon as possible.  We should have focused on our goals and not be tempted to things that we want. It is what we need and our dreams really matter. I know that most of the OFW’s prefer to be at home in the Philippines including me.

What do you think? How long have you been an OFW? Do you really want to go home and be with your families and friends soon?

Food Trip Blog-A-Thon – Uno Pizzeria & Grill

Another installment of my Foodtrip Blog-A-Thon – This time a restaurant I eagerly awaited to be in Qatar. I first dined UNO in City Center Mall in Dubai, UAE and I am a fan of the theme and of course the food. Uno Pizzeria & Grill or Uno Chicago Grill is said to be established in 1943 in Chicago USA.

I think I have been in this restaurant five time since it opened. I love the place and the food. I will definitely come back.

♥️ Restaurant location and ambiance is amazing! Dining out overlooking the Oasis and MOQ stage is great. Food is great big servings! and staffs are helpful. Price is Ok especially if you are using an Entertainer or Mybook.

❌ Only one branch and location is in Mall of Qatar – a bit far from Doha. Hope they put up another one within City limits.

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Freebies! Tasty potato balls

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Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo good for two!

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Citrus BBQ Salmon

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Have you tried UNO? If you love American Food this definitely a must try!

PS: UNO is also the home of the legendary Chicago style Deep Dish Pizza – I will come back for it!

Introduction to Qatar-MMUP Engineering Registration – A Step by Step Guide

MME NewThis is an update of my previous blog in 2016 regarding the Qatar-MMUP Engineering Registration Renewal and Upgrade, there are a lot of questions regarding the application process as follows;

  • New Application
  • Renewal
  • Renewal and Upgrade
  • Re-enrollment

This is an introduction to the step by step process on how to apply, renew and upgrade your MME Engineering Registration. It has been asked many times on may platforms such as FB, Viber, Qatarliving and many others and I hope that this would help all other engineers that will read this blog.

Please note that this is an introduction only. I cannot complete the process till the end since my MMUP/MME Engineering Certificate is still active until October 2018.

Currently the engineers classification are changed as follows:

  • Trainee
  • Grade C
  • Grade B
  • Grade A
  • Expert ???

Previously all applications are done through the Arabic website only, now the application, renewal and upgrade already have an English version. I believe MMUP/MME are exerting their efforts to have this in other languages also.

Please note that this process might changed by MMUP/MME anytime including the website including its appearance.

MMUP/MME Application Procedures

MME/MMUP English version website link – http://www.mme.gov.qa/cui/index.dox?siteID=2

Step 1

Log on to MMUP/MME website using our Hukoomi account.

MME Log In English

Hukomi Log in

Step 2

After logging on your MMUP/MME account, should be directed into MMUP/MME English version of website. Click on the “hard hat” as shown.

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Step 3

Then click on the “Registration and follow-up of Applications” box

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Step 4

Then click on the “Apply” box shown below

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Step 5

In this page the option are all shown. Each has its own explanation below.

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Step 6

Beyond this I do not more information. I will ask help on my engineer friends and previous colleagues so that I can complete each of the items above.

Again, please note that this process might changed by MMUP/MME anytime including the website and it appearance. This is for guidance only and any issues you might encounter following these steps is at your own.  I including PICE, PICE Qatar and other persons names shown in this blog therefore does not accept liability for any errors or omissions in the contents of this message which arise including any negative impact on your application.

PS. I have also a separate blog on the MMUP Engineering Registration appeal process. Check it out on this link – Qatar-MMUP Engineering Registration Appeal – A Step by Step Guide.

If you have other useful information and insights, I will gladly include them in the comments  below. Please feel free to complete the next steps you have information and/or have done the process to help others in need. Anyone can re-blog this and share.

Cheers!

H

Qatar-MMUP Engineering Registration Appeal – A Step by Step Guide

downloadFollowing my previous blog in 2016 regarding the Qatar-MMUP Engineering Registration Renewal and Upgrade, there are a lot of questions regarding application for an appeal for re-test and category/grade issues.

This step by step process was provided by the Past President of Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers (PICE) Qatar Chapter Engineer Ronaldo Nilo. Thank you sir and I hope that this would help all other engineers that will read this blog.

Please note that this process might changed by MMUP/MME anytime including the website including its appearance.

MMUP/MME Appeal Procedures

MME/MMUP website link – MME Arabic Site

At the moment, (unfortunately for non-Arabic) the appeal is in Arabic format only. Please note that you should use the MMUP/MME Arabic website. The Appeal will not be shown on English Website. It is suggested to ask help from your Arabic PRO or colleague.

Step 1

Log on to MMUP/MME website using our Hokoomi account.

MME Log In Arabic

Hukomi Log in

Step 2

After logging on your MMUP/MME account, you will be directed to the Arabic site. If you are on English site click on “AR” initials on the website header (near the globe). Click on the “hard hat” as shown.

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Step 3

You will see the next page as shown below. Click on the last option.

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Step 4

After step 2, you will see the next page as shown below. Click the highlighted option.

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Step 5

On to the next page, click the marked option.

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Step 6

On to the next page, click the marked option.

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Step 7

Then you will be directed to this page where you can choose which appeal you would want to apply for. First option is for those who fail the exam, 2nd is category or grade, 3rd is specialization and last is others. If you are appealing for upgrading, choose the 2nd option…After choosing the option, you can upload any supporting documents you have like certificates, IDs etc. Then on the box below, copy and paste your appeal letter. Prepare your letter first in English. Then translate to arabic using google. You can do it by paragraph. Do it yourself first then have it finalized by your arabic translator. Once finalized, just copy and paste to the box.

6

In Step 7 the choices and a bit of explanation are as follows:

  1. Fail Exam – this is to reapply for another exam if you fail a recent examination
  2. Category – this is to appeal for change of category or grade. This is when you are given a Trainee or grade C but you deserve a grade B or A.
  3. Specialization – this is very seldom used but in-case you are given Electrical Engineer certificate but you are a Civil Engineer.
  4. Others – Other issues that is not covered above.

From here on you should have your Arabic PRO or Colleague with you as you need to prepare statement in Arabic.

Step 8

After clicking submit in step 6, you should see this page confirming that your appeal has been registered and appeal request number will be shown. I suggest you print this page for your future reference another option is screen capture (Ctrl+PrtScn).

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Step 9

Wait for the text message informing you of the schedule of interview.

Step 10

Goodluck!

I believe MMUP/MME are exerting their efforts to have this in other languages also. The Application and renewal already have an English version. Hopefully the English version for the appeal should be out soon.

Other valuable pointers, information and need to know regarding the MMUP/MME appeal provided by PICE Qatar Engineers below;

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Again, please note that this process might changed by MMUP/MME anytime including the website and it appearance. This is for guidance only and any issues you might encounter following these steps is at your own.  I including PICE, PICE Qatar and other persons names shown in this blog therefore does not accept liability for any errors or omissions in the contents of this message which arise including any negative impact on your application.

Anyone can re-blog this and share. If you have other information that could help our colleagues please put it in the comment below.

Cheers

H

Food Trip Blog-A-Thon – Rogers Diners

RogersContinuing my Blog-A-Thon series, the next restaurant is the Rogers Diner.  Rogers Diner is an American Restaurant in Doha located along C-Ring Road, Al Sadd Area. The restaurant’s tagline line really elevates your senses.

I am not a regular customer of Rogers Diner but I do visit the place since 2011.  I really love the place, the ambiance especially the plane concept inside the store.

♥️ Restaurant setup and ambiance is amazing! I love the rotating propeller and the overall store concept. Food is great! and staffs are helpful. Price is Ok especially if you are using an Entertainer or Mybook.

❌ Traffic and parking has been removed and replaced by valet parking.

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Roasted Chicken Drumstick and Panko Fried Fish Fillet is highly recommended!

Have you tried Rogers Diner? If you love American Food this definitely a must try!

PS: Their salads are fantastic and they also deliver!

Food Trip Blog-A-Thon – Racks Restaurant

For an OFW, annual vacation is the time to connect and reconnect with the friends, classmates, colleagues, neighbors, immediate and extended family.

In this installment of my Food Trip, I will share about our my family side Lunch at Racks Restaurant in Greenhills.

Racks has been in the Philippines for a long time. I still remember my fond lunch and dinner experience when I was working in Ortigas Area more than 9 years ago.

Racks Flamed Grilled Ribs tag line are as follows:

BEST RIBS IN TOWN. FLAME GRILLED. FALLS OFF THE BONE!

Truly this has been throughout the years!

❤ Highly recommended if you love super soft grilled Ribs! The staffs are good, manager is great! Many branches all around Metro Manila.

❌ We had experienced food issues but quickly responded by the Manager. The dining place is a bit tight.

Super soft Grilled Chicken, Pork, and Beef Ribs Love this!

Java Rice looks like Ketchup Rice.

Side dish macaroni and cheese – not my type

I haven’t had time to take pictures of other menus since we are all hungry and finished everything off.

Have you tried Racks? Are you still following and ding in the restaurant for years?

PS Thier Barbecue sauce came from heaven! I have not heard or seen if they sell them. I would definitely buy.

Cheers!

Solar Power – This One for the Environment

Pollution, climate change, global warming, greenhouse gasses….. This environmental issues are harmful effects of human activity on the biophysical environment. It has been said that the environment destruction caused by humans is a global problem, and this is a problem that is on going every day. By year 2050, the global human population is expected to become 9.6 billion people from about 7 billion today. That’s a lot of humans lets just imagine what the world will be if we do not do something….. TODAY!

I have been an advocate of environmental protection…. I recycle, reuse and reduce my household wastes in some simple ways such as reducing use of plastic bags, reusing plastic bags, etc…

Back to this post, this time I am going green by installing solar panels for my home back in the Philippines. This means from around 7:00 in the morning up to 5:00 in the afternoon, our home is powered by the sun. At night, when the sun in the other part of the world, the normal Meralco power kicks in.

This is a big decision for me and my family because the investment cost is high and we should be aware of the returns. These are the returns we expect and would like to share to all of you:

  • Going green – we all know that solar energy is renewable energy and this will have positive impact to our environment
  • Reducing carbon emissions – solar energy will reduce our dependency to oil and gas.
  • More Sun – Philippines is one of the sunniest countries and solar power is very viable.
  • Reduce electricity (Meralco) cost
  • The solar panels have 10 years warranty and its expected useful life is more than 20 years. At 20 years old it has been studied that the panels will still produce 92% of its original power generation.
  • Capable of “Net Metering”

Net Metering

So you are now asking how much will it cost to have your own Solar System?

Before I answer this question is you should know what size of solar system do you need. Because the price is dependent size of solar system installation. This answers your question…. My solar installer provided to me the following simple rule of thumb:

  • If your electricity bill is less than 1,000 pesos you might not need a solar system since you possible cannot recover your investment cost. Unless you really love the environment…. why not poknat! Go!
  • If your electricity bill is less than 5,000 pesos, you need a 2.2kW solar system. This what usually a normal household is installing. If you are an OFW you can afford this.
  • If your electricity bill is less than 8,000 pesos, you need a 3.2kW solar system. This what I installed in hour home.
  • If your electricity bill is more than 8,000 pesos, you need a 5.4kW solar system or more. This for big houses and businesses. A lot of business already are installing solar systems…. SM Malls, Central Mall, Robinson’s Mall, Robinsons Land, Powerplant Mall, BPI Banks, BDO banks, etc.
SM North Edsa Solar

SM North EDSA Solar Panel Installation

I would like to thank SolarSet for my solar system installations. They really are one of the most professional and passionate people who will help you on you solar needs and give a little back to the environment. If you like some more readings and further information on home solar systems installation click here.

If you like me to know more about this or you are very interested for a Solar System for your home or businesses in the Philippines, you can contact me by commenting on this post or email me at henrikgal@gmail.com.

Cheers!

H

Back to Work

Hello!

Coming back from my longest vacation ever since I set foot on Qatar…. I usually take my vacation into two weeks long twice a year. Three long weeks I enjoyed and savored the company of my family and friends.

Morning1

I wake up on a sky like this!

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Morning Sky

This vacation is very special since I had also ticked one big box on my bucket list and I can’t wait to tell everyone about it.

Solar

This one is for the Environment

That’s it for now.

Cheers

Henrik

 

Food Trip Blog-A-Thon – Ramen Nagi

Continuing this series of food blogs, as I am vacationing in the Philippines, food and eating out is a must! 

Family Dinner has been very special every time I go home. We always look for new restaurants or restaurants that we never try before. Philippines has millions of restaurants to choose from!

Ramen Nagi is a Japanese Restaurant specializing in Ramen! Located in UP Uptown Mall the restaurant boasts its award winning ramen. 

♥️ Restaurant setup and ambiance is great! Ramen is amazing! the taste is unique and staffs are helpful. 

❌ Traffic and parking is normal in the Philippines. Price range is in medium range for Philippine Restaurants.


Dining area, i love the table and the flags!

Japanese food galore!


This is the award winning Butao King! The soup tastes like having the Balut soup but in big bowls. It tastes better with mild spice! 


Red King looks very intimidating and is spicy! The Spicy hot soup base is very interesting! 

Have you tried Ramen Nagi? If you love Ramens and noodles this definetly a must try!

PS: Ramen Nagi’s policy is no take out on all soup/ramen menu.