Sunday, May 14, 2006

The Cyclone: Demise Exaggerated?

According to The Desert Weasel The Cyclone is due to be closed.

At least partly out of curiosity, and partly due to a suggetion of Captain Bligh's in his version of a certain unpleasant incident on the HMS Bounty, I had to drop by and check. (I've been under the weather lately, and Captain Bligh has a medicinal recommendation in his memoirs that I thought I should try.)

I arrived at 5:30 p.m. and, finding no security guards/ticket takers, I went in.

I asked 'What time does the cover start?' '€17.' 'No, what TIME?' '7:00 p.m.' But they were setting up the cash register and ticket machine by 6:00 p.m. and I've been asked to buy a ticket as early as 6:30 (I decided to skip the Cyclone that evening). I believe the cover is €22 on weekends, but apparently there's a discount mid-week.

Inside the Cyclone are two bars. One charges less than €3 for a 20 oz. pint, the other charges more than €6 for a 12 oz. bottle of the same popular beverage. This isn't an intelligence test: before 9 p.m., the €3 bar is open; after 9 p.m., it closes and the €6 bar opens. Why they don't have a single bar with variable prices escapes me.

For those who like a cheap beverage in the late afternoon, I can recommend The Cyclone. After 9 p.m., it caters to a very different clientele, but I invariably make my departure well before 7 p.m. One afternoon, I found a few journalists chatting over the news, and was impressed with the quality of the discourse (which was bi-lingual, but I liked the 50% I could understand), but much of the time The Cyclone is deserted at 6 p.m.

While inside, I asked if the rumour about the imminent demise of The Cyclone was true.

'We have had five year leases from Al Nasr Leisureland since 1994, our current lease runs until 2009, and then it will be renewed for another five years.'

So, it appears, the sad demise of Al Nasr Cinema, a cinema that was always crowded with South Indians every night and even more crowded on weekends, has grown into a rumour that all of Al Nasr Leisureland will soon be history.

As far as the employees know, The Lodge, with its nice, reasonably priced (€5.25) luncheon, and the Cyclone, with its cheap afternoon beverage specials, will be around for the foreseeable future. (NB 'The foreseeable future, in Dubai, is certainly less than the three years The Cyclone is legally guaranteed space to operate.)

And it is still true that if one says, 'I just dropped into The Cyclone for a quick beverage,' no one will believe it.


Blogger adevents said...

oh ya right i belive u u only went for a drink
just like that bus stop story

9:17 am  
Blogger Harsha said...

lol @ adevents

3:50 pm  

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