It’s almost time to get back to school or college, which, for parents, can mean only one thing – tuition fee payment time.
One lucky student and his family, however, don’t need to worry so much about the financial burden now after winning Y and Oman Tourism College’s fabulous competition offering financial help for their education.
We were inundated with entries ranging from young pupils up to those at college, all keen to claim the RO500 prize, put up by Oman Tourism College (www.otc.edu.om). Entry was easy, with students just having to tell us in 100 words or less what their favourite place in Oman is and why.
Wading through the entries was a task in itself, but only one could emerge triumphant.
In the end, it was Mahmood Tariq Jalal, 16, a Grade 11 student at Anas Bin Al Nadher School in Seeb, who impressed the main judge, Dr Abdulkareem Sultan al Mughairy, the Dean of Oman Tourism College, with his beautiful poem about Oman.
“There was a lovely collection of stories about the most cherished places in Oman. The variety really showed how much the beauty of the country is appreciated,” said Jaana Raisanen, Director of Quality for Professional and Vocational Studies at Oman Tourism College. “The winning entry caught the essence of it all – it’s the entire country as a single destination comprising of so many attractions and experiences to try out. “
Congratulations, Mahmood! We’ll be in touch to arrange collection of your RO500 soon.
Oman is my favourite place,
wherever I go I find a trace.
I love everything in it,
from sunshine to sunset.
I like the mountains, the deserts
and the running water in the wadis.
I like the crowded places in the city
and the calm villages of Sur and Yity.
I like the date trees in Nakhal,
and the high mountains of Yanqul.
I like the green majestic landscape
of Salalah with its serenity and beauty.
All in all, I like Oman in summer,
winter, spring and in fall.
Mahmood was chosen from a shortlist of 12, whittled down from all the entries.
Here’s some of the Best of the Rest, those that made the shortlist deserve praise too – they have made themselves and their parents proud. Well done!
My favorite place in Oman? Well, that would be my small little world Seeb. I don’t reside in Seeb but my school is in Seeb which makes it my favorite place. No kiddin’… I’ve been studying in this school for the past 5 years and all that I am today is only because of my school, my teachers and my dearest friends. If I had never met them my life would have been so different and I don’t even wish to imagine it. I’ve got the best bunch of friends anyone could ever get in this world and everyday I wake up wishing its not another stupid holiday in which I would have to simply sit at home.
Baisil Kunjumon, aged 14, Grade 10, Indian School, Seeb
My favourite place in Oman is the Marina. Whenever we go there, we swim in the pool. I also like the boats surrounding the place. Even though the boats are really noisy sometimes, I want to ride in one. I also like the fishes that swim around in the water. I like the view there too. I like swimming in the Marina because it lets me have time with my sisters. But the thing that made me a little sad and disappointed is that when we visited again (August 15), the water was dirty and we didn’t see any fishes. That made me sad because the dirt was bothering me and I really enjoy looking at the fishes every time I go.
Denise Anne Mills, aged 10, Philippine School
There are many tourist visiting places in Oman like Jebel Shams, Jebel Akhtar, Royal Opera House, Grand Mosque, several museums, planetoriam etc. I like all of them but I feel that Grand Mosque is one of the best places I have ever visited in my life. It is so big and also beautiful. It is so big that many Muslims can come there and pray. It is made of white marble so it shines and attracts many tourists. There is a single-piece carpet laid along the whole mosque, which makes it much cleaner.
There is a big huge chandelier, which increases its beauty highly. Especially at night, it glows so bright that it looks very beautiful from outside also. Muslims as well as non-Muslims can come and visit it. It has a library also which has many Islamic books, which give knowledge about Islam. Hence I love going to the Grand Mosque.
Esha Jain, aged 12, Grade 7, Indian School Muscat
My favourite place in Oman is Qantab beach. I like because of its scenic beauty, shallow waters and clean sands. Especially the route to Qantab, which makes me feel that this beach is located on high hills. There I can find number of five star resorts surrounding the beach which adds more value to the beach. On weekends I visit this beach to have a look at the beautiful sunset.
Now my worry is, due to rise in real estate development in Oman this beach will soon be used for constructional activities, which I read in the news. I feel this will destroy the picturesque of the beach. As this beach is very close to my heart I would like to suggest to concerned authorities to use the unused land around it and let the beach continue to be Paradise On Earth.
Krithivaas Vijay, aged 12, Indian School Muscat
MY LIFE, MY HOUSE
I have been in Oman from 16 years. I have seen all types of weather like winter, summer, enjoyed the rain of Oman, been to all places like the malls, forts, beaches etc, but the place I love the most is my life, my house where I sit with my family and enjoy the time we all have. It’s not that I don’t travel with my friends but the happiness you get in your house, you will not get anywhere. You go to a mall or forts or anything, you have to pay for it and have happiness for some hours but happiness from family is priceless and it remains for life. Just want to conclude it by saying we go anywhere, spend as much money we can but love from our family you can’t buy from anywhere.
Hardik Anup Bhatia, aged 20, Waljat Colleges of Applied Sciences
Today I will tell you about my favorite place in Oman, which is Salalah and how wonderful it is. It is a really green place and with lots of rain and fog. Wadi Darbat has very beautiful green nature and many camels, cows and goats along the road. At the top of the foggy mountains is Nabi Aiobs grave. Ain Athoom is also another wonderful place in Salalah with waterfalls and a dark cave.
I liked Salalah because of its nature, it’s delicious fresh fruits especially the coconut and its tasty camel meat. Because of its unique nature, Salalah is the best place to make barbeque. I also liked the traditional souq, malls and festivals there.
Mariam Dawood al Raisi, aged 10, Grade 5, The Sultan’s School
Special Y shout out to Timothy Taylor, aged 11, in Year 7, at British School Muscat. We loved your handwritten entry. It was a bit over 100 words, but your story about a mammoth trip to Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve with your family made us smile. We’ll put it up on Facebook for everyone to read. Well done, Tim!