A Delightful Spring Evening

Spring: a lovely reminder of how beautiful change can really be

Definitely, just like spring, a beautiful change is slowly being felt in Saudi Arabia. The Spring Season Festival was celebrated at Dammam Cornice inspired by the annual blossoming of cherry blossom, similar to the significant and well-celebrated national event in Japan.

My friends and I were among the many spectators who joined the spring festival. As it was a weekend, there was so much delay in reaching the place. Traffic was very congested. I was sitting in the front seat so I took advantage of it to quickly snap photos as we slowly get closer to the place.

It was almost sunset when we arrived. The good part of it however, I was able to capture that moment when the sun is about to set – it was lovely!

Our eagerness to be at “The Gathering” event was driven not solely to see the spring-themed area but to watch the orchestra play some jazz music as well.

There was a long line of people at the entrance gate but those who registered online got the chance to move forward faster than the others. We missed the first set of the show so while waiting, we enjoyed the lovely view by the fountain, a perfect time to pose for photos!

When the sky turned dark, it gave way to the colorful lights all over the place adding a more festive feel to the evening. We’re not certain whether or not we could get ourselves seated where the orchestra plays so we patiently waited at the entrance.

Our perseverance paid off! There we were, delighted with the live performances like we are not actually in Saudi Arabia (big smile!). Music artist, Frank in Person and the Skyline Orchestra, a group from Netherlands gave a stunning performance. It never crossed my mind that of all the places where I can watch Frank Sinatra and Abba Tribute acts, it was in Saudi Arabia. For a moment, I was having second thoughts if it was really happening!

When Frank, the Dutch Frank Sinatra started singing Sway, I knew it was a time to indulge myself in dancing (just tiny dance moves while sitting, hahaha!) to one of my favorite songs and because of that, I failed to check if I saved the video. I was hoping to share it with my brother–in-law (sad!).

Some of the songs the group performed were My way, New York New York, Fly me to the moon, Sway, Leroy Brown, Money Money, Honey Honey, Waterloo, Dancing Queen and Mama Mia!

The Female singers and some members of the orchestra were happy to pose for photos with my friends and as always, it’s a pleasure to be my friends’ photographer :-)

“The Gathering” was truly a gathering of so many families, friends and work colleagues. Every corner of the place is filled with people. I must say that the efforts to bring more entertainment options to the residents in Saudi Arabia are gaining positive results.

Spring adds new life and new beauty to all that is

Jessica Harrelson

After enjoying the live musical treat, it is now time to explore the place. I was telling myself that if the decorative cherry blossom trees placed all over the venue was utterly fascinating how much more if I could see the real trees – it will be such an awesome experience!

The Sakura Alley, lined with cherry blossom trees was the most crowded area. Shooting photographs in a large crowd was a challenge but did it stop me and my friends from shooting photos? Definitely not! The sight of some Dads holding their little ones higher and closer to the blossoms were such sweet moments to capture.

Huge colorful flowers made to open and close were placed on the ceiling at the Dancing Flowers area. There were also other entertainers wandering at the area.

Several choices of food were offered by local vendors but with the amount of people present that evening, we had to patiently wait for our turn to place our orders. The weather was nice but a cold gust of wind was also felt while we stand in line. Honestly, the barbecue’s aroma made me hungrier! :-)

It was an evening of pure delight. Leaving the place after the show was over gave us more opportunities to take more photos, minus the crowd!

True enough, The Gathering added a new story in our lives in Saudi Arabia and we look forward to spending another spring festival as charming as this.