Alexander McNabb

Nosy Parker

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It was Sarah who found the list of benefits that came with our credit card. I had never really bothered, particularly given my policy of having as little to do with our bank as possible on the grounds that it’s invariably bad for my health.

So when she announced that we could use our credit card to valet park for free in many of the city’s shopping malls, I was not only surprised but delighted. We were to go to Mirdif City Centre in any case and so I could look forward to trying out this New Thing and ‘availing my benefit’.

You might think I approached this with malign glee and the prospect of a snarky blog post in mind and if so you can award yourself a pat on the back and a banana daquiri because that’s precisely what I was thinking. I could see it in my mind’s eye – the uncomprehending, cow-like stare and the nervous laugh, the appalling delay while someone was telephoned to see if this was, in fact, the case. The sardonic laughter of the man who’s not falling for some Brit’s lame attempt to save twenty chips by trying to scam his way in.

When the man from ubiquitous valet parking company Valtrans looked at my proffered card, smiled and said, “Of course, sir!” I was flummoxed, flabbergasted and probably a little bamboozled as well. It worked like a dream and generally did what it said on the box.

So now I’ve got a new scheme in mind. I’m going to valet park everywhere. HSBC’s paying for this and I’m going to bankrupt the bastards, Dhs20 at a time.

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