More complaints - this time with added bitchiness.

Right, back in to the fray... about complaints, again.

FIRST: If you're a newish visitor to the site, before we get on to the meat of this argument it might be worth taking a look at an older post to get some background on the subject of complaints and who makes them the most. To do that you might like to catch up by reading Complaints and the people who make them. A post from back in 2009 that caused a certain expat group some... discomfort.

So read that if you like, then pop back here - or not - either way we can now move on...

SECOND: Peruse the image below if you will...

We get to run/cycle on this for nothing? - Photo courtesy of

It's the fantastic Yas Marina circuit.

"So what?" I hear you all ask. (if you didn't, for the purposes of blogging-license just humour me would you)

SO WHAT? Here's so what. Every Tuesday for months Yas Marina Circuit has seen fit to open its gates to allow runners and cyclists the opportunity to utilise its 5.6km (long course) or 2.something km (short course) ribbon of sweet tarmac-ed beauty for the purposes of running (some), staggering (me), walking (tourists), or pedalling (lycra fetishists).

No sparing the light either - every one of it's lights is turned on and blazing, allowing all participants clear views and sure footing. Not an 'every other light' thing, ALL of them.

Free water is handed out for participants on the way in, AND on their exit as they sweatily crawl toward their cars.

How much does this cost?
HOW MUCH for the use of the facility, bottled water, and the ability to safely train in an environment that is clear of cars or marauding tricycle riders?
A facility that in order to make this weekly event happen has to pay for a stack of staff - reception/water stackers/marshals/ and security to direct in the car park.

How much?


That's how much.

Not. A. Dime.

To the point...

On arriving at the car gate for the parking area the supplied-at-no-cost-to-my-good-person security guard smiled and explained that as the right hand park was full, I'd have to park at the other end of the compound.

"Sure!" I said turned left and went on my way.

On my way I noticed that 2 cars had parked up in what looked to be a reasonable spot close to the gate I'd have to walk through, so, like a lemming I parked there as well.

I faffed about, retrieving my water pack from the passenger side floor, marvelling that it had managed to NOT leak its sports-drink goodness on to the carpet in my wife's car, stowed wallet and phone, and got out...

...walking straight into a harpy shrill voice being directed at a newly arrived security dude.

...who had walked up to the area in which we had parked, at no cost to me.
...who had NO power in his job other than to do what he was told to do.

Apparently we had all misunderstood the gate guy, and had not parked in the correct spot. (I blame those parked before me, I am after all, even on a good day, lemming like)

He was polite, and quietly spoken.

My 'muse' for this blog, a cyclist dressed in yellow lycra top with black lycra pants, and looking for all the world like a shelled Cadbury creme-egg, was lighting in to the guard.

She was obviously dismayed that she couldn't park 3 feet from the gate and had to move her car 40 metres away, thus creating an arduous additional 10 seconds of travel time, 20 if you include the return trip (although it WAS slightly uphill, so perhaps 21 seconds, to be fair).

I stopped to work out what the problem was, initially I thought that the guard, out of pure social conscience, had come to comment on appropriate dress...

...once I had worked out what was going on I simply began moving back to my car to move it.

I did this without being told, or at least I am sure the guard was on his way to let me know, but had been waylaid and was at that point being screamed at -

Creme-egg :"YOU need to sort yourself out"
Yes of course, given the guy's position on the board of the Yas Marin...wait, no.. not his position.In his roll of director of operations.. wait, no, he's not director of anything. He's just a guard. Some dude, to be yelled at. Apparently.
Guard: "Ma'am you can't park here"
In hindsight, pretty obvious that we couldn't (see lemming clause)
Creme-egg: "It's too late"
Guard: "What is too late?"
Creme-egg: "It's too late"
Guard: "What is too la.."
Creme-egg: "It's too late"
Guard: "What is t.."
Creme-egg: "IT'S TOO LATE" (harpy level screeching now)

The guard was understandably confused. Too late for what?

I broke solidarity with my western sister by moving my car. The moment she saw me opening the driver's door, while another person (newly arrived) moved to do the same, she knew she was beaten.

Creme-egg parked next to me in the far flung reaches of the new parking spot.

We made eye contact as we exited our respective vehicles.

"This is just not good enough!" said the Egg-ster, heatedly
"It's a free service you know" I replied quietly, but in a tone that suggested that I thought she had behaved, and was still behaving, like a tool. A big, yellow and black, tool.

As we walked back along the spinifex strewn 100 odd foot trek, in order to somehow justify her anger AND suggest the fight was based around a conspiracy, she slid into this little gem :

"It's only free because they are terrified we will DIE on the roads OUT THERE"
"Maybe" realising for the first time in a while I wasn't the craziest person in a conversation.
"No maybe about it" raged Creme-ey "I KNOW it for a FACT"

She stopped then and turned back, having forgotten to grab something she could beat the guard with I suspect.

Seriously. On what planet could this be considered reasonable behaviour. Whatever inconvenience that might have ensued surely didn't warrant screaming at some poor carpark-dude.

A disgusting display? Yes.
Was I embarrassed to have the same skin colour as the Harpy-come-creme-egg? Yes.

Sad, sad individual.
And cowardly.
And needs to not wear lycra.

On returning to the gate I waved and grinned at the guard, then went on to enjoy the facility.

Wasn't asked for a cent.


  1. Nationality of Creme-Egg???? Come on, you can't miss out the most important part of the story....!!!!

  2. Take a guess...

    ...a nationality that has made a national sport out of complaining.

    Often heard to mutter "Oh, but it's not like we get back home" in reference to anything that is remotely different from what they have available on the shelves in the Tesco around the corner from their homes.

    They like tea, and love to tell everyone how rubbish tea is everywhere else in the world.

  3. Phil10:36

    Oh yeah because the ones with the big hats with corks hanging from them NEVER get caught complaining about anything.........

  4. Indeed... our complaints seem to be more pragmatic, and tend to be directed at people who can actually do something about it, rather than kicking crap out of 'the little people'.

    ooh.. and we do complain about Jonny Wilkinson too.


Andrew Webber is a writer, living in Abu Dhabi with his wife, two cats and two dogs.

His first book "Erasure" was published in June 2012 and was followed in 2013 by the Prequel to Erasure, "Broken".

In 2016 Erasure was a prize winner in the Montegrappa Writing Prize - part of the Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature.

For more information click the "Erasure" book cover on the left side of this site, or simply go to

Thanks for visiting.