Dubai isn’t a clean city ‘by nature’. In fact, there are days when the roads are so dirty, especially after a sand storm. Then there are people who litter, bunches of them! Cigarette butts fly off from cars, plastic cups, pet bottles…however, Dubai dispatches these orange guys on the road, sweeping sand, dirt and trash all throughout the day – RISKING life with the fast cars on the side.
Even in summer. (And we all know how summer can be here in the Middle East.)
Once I caught a guy casually throwing a plastic cup after he finished his morning tea (people walk on the streets with piping hot spiced milk tea) so I walked up to him and told him why he’s doing that. I was new here and came from Japan. The scene was the most unnatural for me. He shrugged his shoulders, said “There are street cleaners, madam!” and walked away.
I went to work and told my colleagues – someone said “If there are no trash throwers (litterers), those orange guys (the sweepers) won’t have anything to sweep, lose their jobs and make their family hungry madame!”
Horribly implying that we need to make the streets dirty to feed some hungry family in someone’s home country! How utterly wrong.