DUBAI, UAE – A young tourist has been sleeping rough in a vacant lot in the urban jungle of Bur Dubai after running out of money while on a short visit to the UAE.
The sight of a person sleeping on a discarded black couch in the desert heat drew concern from neighbours who felt pity for the unknown “gutter” dweller.
It turned out the young man is a 23-year-old Saudi, who simply introduces himself as Majid.
Asked why he was sleeping rough, Majid said: “I have no money for a hotel room. I’ve slept on this spot for the last few nights. I like it here because people don’t disturb me. I’ve been around Dubai, visited and slept in Jumeirah area, too.”
Residents near the upmarket Golden Sands district noticed that the enigmatic visitor would arrive at his favourite sleeping spot late at night and leave early morning, just after sunrise.
A concerned resident who noticed the young man’s predicament say: “Nobody seems to care about his plight. This poor young man has been sleeping outdoor in the cold/heatt/fog in a sandy lot next to our building for the past four days.”
Majid, who claims he came Saudi Arabia’s north-eastern province of Al Hasa, said he just completed university and would like to see Dubai for himself, but ran out of money.
He did not say how or why.
“It does not mean that every Saudi has plenty of money. I don’t have money for a hotel room so I slept here. I’m not disturbing anyone.”
Majid sleeps next to his motorbike helmet and wears a rundown pair of black shoes, a biker’s waistcoat with an American flag at the back, and a below-the-knee denim pants.
He said he lives on a diet of sharwarma and burgers during his Dubai visit.
“I’ve been sleeping on this discarded couch for the last few nights. I’ll probably drive home in a few days,’ he said, claiming he has a bike here.