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Help needed - information on Yemen

Brisbane, Australia
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8 posts
179 reviews
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Help needed - information on Yemen

I am an Australian writer who is currently researching Yemen for a novel. The main character is an Australian woman whose husband is an engineer working on a dam in Yemen.

If all goes well with the story I will visit the country in person, perhaps when it is considered safer for a solo woman to do so.

I am frustrated by the lack of information available about current conditions there, and wonder if anyone would mind answering a small number of questions, most which are just for background information?

I would be most grateful.

If you are happy to help, let me know and I'll send the questions through. There will be less than 15 and will only require a sentence or two each.

Thank you.

Kind regards

Brenda

Yemen
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1 post
36 reviews
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1. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

OK I'm living in the old city. I woudl like to help you, if I can.

Brisbane, Australia
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8 posts
179 reviews
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2. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

Oh, thank you so much! I'll try to keep it brief.

The protagonist is a strong-willed professional Australian woman whose husband is an engineer working on a dam in Yemen. She and her sixteen year old daughter travel from Australia to visit him (in early December) and the daughter disappears.

1. Fist impressions of Sana'a - does it have a distinctive smell like, say, Hong Kong? What are the predominant sounds? Is it dusty? What would the mother and daughter first notice when they leave the airport?

2. The daughter disappears in a crowded market while the mother is making a purchase. Where would the market be? What would she be buying? If they purchased a snack from a food stall, what would it be?

3. Police in Sana'a. - I cant seem to find out any information about ranks. If she is dealing with a superior, would he be, say, a Senior Sergeant or what else would he be called?

4. Should the mother and daughter be wearing head scarves or other coverings out of respect for local traditions?

5. Which hotel in Sana'a would they be staying if they have safety concerns?

Money would not be an issue.

6. Another character, a western businessman, has a beautiful house In Sana'a. It is in a quiet street and on a large block of land. Can you suggest an area of the city for this house?

7. I know there is a Marib Dam. I have also seen a news item that suggested that a UAE funded Hassan Dam may be underway. Have they begun construction yet? I cannot find any reference to it more recent than 2010.

8. Vehicles in streets - Looking at Google Images there seems to be a lot of old Toyota utilities, motorbikes and light trucks. There are a few modern looking compact cars. Would the modern ones be rare?

9. The danger in setting this part of the novel in Sana'a when I haven't visited there is that I might be missing something blindingly obvious and therefore create credibility issues. Can you think of anything in particular that is important I mention?

If it is easier for you to send an email - brenda@brendacheers.com

Thank you for your offer of help. You are living in a fascinating part of the world and I'm itching to see it!

Kind regards

Brenda

Monroe, Louisiana
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201 posts
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3. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

Read Nelson Demile's new book "The Panther". Lots of information there. It's fiction but I think it was well researched. I have never been there myself though.

Brisbane, Australia
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8 posts
179 reviews
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4. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

I will! Thank you.

Brenda

dubai
3 posts
2 reviews
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5. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

Dear Brenda,

I am a woman too, european, and I have just returned from my second trip to Yemen. The first one was two years ago. It is perfectly safe in sanaa and I suggest you travel there as it would be extremely valuable to experience it first hand. Not only you get responses on all your questions but may give you additional ideas. Sanaa old souk is an unforgettable experience.

I have stayed in Dawood hotel in old town, and used Radfan Tour Agency www.visityementours.weebly.com for visas and trips out of sanaa. Abdulaziz and Kais are both excellent.

All the best with your book.

Brisbane, Australia
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8 posts
179 reviews
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6. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

I'll be so close to Yemen next year (transiting through Dubai), so may just do that for a day or two if the situation seems stable enough.

Thanks for your advice.

Brenda

Sana'a
2 posts
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7. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

hi there,

I'm sam from yemen. it's my pleasure to help u.

cheers

Sana'a
2 posts
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8. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

Happy that u enjoyed your time in yemen.

cheers

dubai
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10 posts
27 reviews
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9. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

Also read Travels in Dictionary Land by Tim Mackintosh Smith if you haven't done so already. Tim has lived in the city for over 20 years.

david@offbeatours.com.

www.offbeatours.com.

Brisbane, Australia
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8 posts
179 reviews
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10. Re: Help needed - information on Yemen

I just checked and can source this from the local library. Thanks so much for the tip.

Brenda

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