UAE National Day: No long weekend for these expats as duty comes first

UAE National Day: No long weekend for these expats as duty comes first

While many residents are now on overseas adventures or staycations, not everyone has the same privilege. Meet the people who are always willing to give up their holidays so others can enjoy theirs


SM Ayaz Zakir

Published: Thu 1 Dec 2022, 6:02 PM

The quiet offices and the absence of cars honking during what used to be the rush hours were all signs that point to one thing: The last long weekend of the year has officially begun in the UAE.

While many residents are going on overseas adventures or staycations, others are getting all the sleep they need at home. However, for some expats, it’s business as usual — no break, leaves, or even a weekend.

Ateeq Ahmed, who looks after a parking lot in Sharjah’s Majaz 1, has already had his mind set for full days of work as travelling residents had placed their cars under his care.

“They will come back only after the holidays. They have trusted me and left their vehicles here, so I have to look after them,” said Ateeq Ahmed.

Abdul Kalam, a worker at the Sharjah Municipality, knows that he won’t be able to take a break, too, because there are plants and shrubs relying on him.

“I am very close to these plants and the greenery. If I don’t water them for a day, I cannot have a peaceful night,” said Abdul, who usually volunteers to work even on his days off.

Besides keeping the greenery alive, Abdul Kalam also cleans up the Kalba beach as if it were his home.


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