Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Childhood Entertainment!

I remember when I went back to Oman in the age of 6, there were different things and places for kids to get entertained or enjoy our free time.

I remember that we used to go to Al-Riyam Park in Muscat/Mattrah & Wadi Al-Kabir Park an average of three times a week after the Asar prayer with my father [ May Mercy cover him], and when we are back we do our home work and have dinner then go to bed. We used to enjoy our short trip to that park a lot. Although at them days the park only had the normal play ground, the play grounds that did nit require any electricity or power supply. The games on the play ground used to be so simple yet you can have so much fun without having to feel bored. You get to play with other kids and enjoy your time till when you are called to go home or have a snack.

Another park that I used to enjoy going to is the Al-Naseem in Barka/Rummis. It’s a huge park and had all sorts of game starting with normal play grounds to the electrical or power supply games/rides to the steaming train that cruise you around the park in half an hour. It used to be fun to go there for a day picnic. I remember it used to be a big deal to go to that park especially on Eid days. We used to go in big number nearly most of my cousins, aunties and uncles from all age. We take food with us and we camp in a location that we consider it to be the centre or meeting point, we get to scatter across the park in groups and then we all go back to the one point to either have rest, or have a snack or get extra money for the games/rides. I don’t remember any one moaning or complaining about the trip, as by the end of it every one will be tried and exhausted, and will only want to have a shower and sleep with a big smile on their faces and feelings of enjoyment.

In the same period of time there was this place that I was always big fond of it, and every time I go there I feel that I was in a different world and when I come out of it I go back to my real world. I guess as a child we are ought to have our imaginary moments with the aid of the surroundings. Any way the place that I am referring to was located in 3rd floor of Oman Commercial Centre (OCC), it was called the Sindbad Centre. There were many rides in them and you keep on jumping from one ride to another and you queue for some and as you change your mind to play you will be next to ride! It used to make me laugh when ever this thing happens to me, its like my mind waits till when I want to change my mind then things do change to the way I want them to be. I used to love buying candy floss and the buttered popcorn, plus some sweets from the vending machine. As I said before once you get into that area you would feel to be in a different world and when you come out of it then you are back to reality. It used to get dead packed over the weekend and on Eid days. But more over the weekend, just because it used to be ONLY ONE DAY of weekend and that was Friday. I always wondered what happened to this place; and why was it closed? I always thought it used to make good money for as I said it was always full and you would wait for ages to get a ride…

With years passed, Al-Khuwair Park was our centre place to meet and arrange a time to spend to meet up with our cousins and play with the rides, then when we are done we go and by Shawarma and go by the Sarooj beach and sit by the beach and have our dinner then we go home, with our mother’s company. We used to enjoy this allot and we never felt bored, infact it used to be a great thing for us to spend these precious time with our mother and the cousins and we set our own games by the beach until midnight and then drop every one home and we go home after that.

Al-Qurum Natural Park became our number ONE place for a good walk and nice time rowing the boats or the rowing water cars in the lakes. Seriously it was really BIG time for us. We used to spend hours in that place and sometime we used to bring our snacks and game with us and we sit somewhere and have our own circle and play with Uno cards, playing cards, Questions/quizzes cards …etc.

I don’t know why, but it used to be a big deal if we mentioned to our friends’ at school that we’ve been to the above places and other places over the weekend or even the week days. It used to built the reaction of “WOW, REALLY! I WISH I WENT WITH YOU!” this kind f reaction made you feel so special that you have gone to these places and other didn’t or they missed it on that certain week and makes you feel lucky somehow.

The current generation had changed its look and view in how to live their childhood or even how to have fun I mean “REAL” fun. Many of them don’t even know any of the parks above and some will know them just because they will use such places as a dating/meeting point and not look into these places to be the most pleasant places to have some fresh air and have nice entertainment with family members.

May be because this sort of entertainment is what was available at that time and our generation did not get into the deep of the modern technology and its brain wash and those we were not dragged into demanding or greediness to have more of the brain entertainment rather than physical entertainment. May be in our time we were looking into having fun more with other kids and enjoy our time with them playing on the same rides or games rather than having to spend hours on game boy or play stations or any of these known gadgets that only allows you to play with the computer/machine rather than with other people or kids.

I feel pity to our current generation and the once after them, that they will or already lost the real meaning of being a child and live their childhood in the genuine way with no stress or living in the machine bubble with one aim in their mind is to WIN over the machine in the games provide in the gadgets.

The truth I miss going to the above places and every time I say when I go to Oman this time I will make an effort to at least pass by and see how they look like but sadly I am always visiting Oman for a short period of time and I don’t even get the chance to say hello to my own family members.

May be there is at least one member in here who will know exactly what I mean by what I wrote above! [Well I hope there will be one at least] :s


Meticulousness said...

I remember those days like they were yesterday. I used to love the natural park; it was more like a vent from pressure. Nothing beats the natural scenery, the bridges, the lake and the whole natural theme that surrounds you there. But once they introduced ‘Marah Land’ everything went down the drain, all they cared about was the income and nothing else. It doesn’t even look natural now and I dislike going there either.

I recall the parks you talked about except for Al-Naseem. I only went there once during the yearly festival. It changed dramatically by then.

Hopefully one day they'll distinguish the natural parks from the so-called 'theme park'.

sweetness said...

I don't think they will exist anymore.Nowadays generation tends more to complexes and electrical stuff.Even though those natural parks will convert one day completely to a electrical parks =)

For me, the only remaining thing is the sea.I hope it remain as it is always =)

Abdullah Ali said...

I partly agree with you but I think it's unfair that you talk about the current generation like we are all into games and not having fun with our lives.

I am 17 and when you say "current generation" that puts me into that category. And I, for one, am very into nature and the outdoors. I am also very much into technology but that's because this is the century we are living in.

It doesn't mean we are brain washed, it's just a part of who we are now.

This is my point of view from a guy who is a part of todays genaration. I hope I've been in any help.

Twister said...

I remember Riyam park vividly...especially the big wavy slides...

Unknown said...