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Riyadh by night: phptp by Matt Sims

Night in Riyadh

Roisin had woken in the small hours. The green light of the clock said 3.10. She knew she wasn't going to be able to sleep again and sat up carefully. The blinds weren;'t closedand the moonlight illuminated the room with a cold radiance.

Slipping out of bed, careful not to disturb Joe, she'd pulled on her robe and got herself some fruit juice from the mini bar. Then she went and sat by the window looking out across Riyadh, her home for the next year.

The cityscape had blazed out in millions of lights. Skyscrapers, impossibly slender and fragile, thrust up towards the sky, and the highways bound them together with loops of light. It was as if someone had asked the designers and architects to build a stage set for a city of the future and they had created this edifice, a city that rested uncomfortably on the desert and on the customs of the people who inhabited it. She remembered what Joe had said when they first met. It's like one of those optical illusions. If she sat here watching for long enough, would the illusion fade? And if it did, what would she see?

Use the links to explore further:

| Map of Riyadh | | A tour of the city | | Wearing the Hijab | | Press Cutting |

Photograph of Riyadh by Matt Sims