September 16, 2012
With Abu Dhabi government announcing that soon all its employees must live in the emirate Deputy Photo Editor Mark Asquith documented his daily commute home from Abu Dhabi to Dubai.
For thousands of people every day, working in the capital and living in Dubai means one thing: the daily commute.
A drearily dull, painfully straight road coupled with the often terrifying driving of other road-users bookends the day in a way most people would happily avoid.
Car sharing is one way to alleviate the tedium, as much for the welcome company on the schlep north or south as it is to save on tyre rubber and petrol costs.
But passengers bring with them their own dilemma: social interaction. How long must a conversation last? Is there anything new to even say? Is it impolite for passengers to sleep through the journey? Can we complain about the music?
The average commuter will clock up around 500 hours annually moving back and forth from Abu Dhabi and Dubai – a total of more than 20 days – so the road should be as familiar as the back of the driver’s hand.
But how many people actually take note of the roads, buildings, mosques and towns that zip by in the daily blur?
Recently, I decided to get the camera out and document the sights along the E11, to record how it looks when the blur becomes frozen.
Whether the images capture the shared experience of tens of thousands of motorists daily, the viewer will have to judge.