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George F. Middleton
First Word

Dear Readers,

Eid Mubarak for mid-month by the way! Ramadan, together with summer, is always an interesting experience; a quieter than usual Holy Month did not, however, dampen the camaraderie and spirit of the many Iftars and Ghabgas held around town last month, as our Bystander pages bear testament to in this issue. Our France in Bahrain report celebrates the long-standing relationship between the two countries, taking a look at France's impact on the Kingdom. From business links and social clubs to fashion outlets across the island, there's a stylish French touch to much of what we see and do this July.

In this issue, we give a detailed round up of everything you need to know about what is taking place in and around town. Also in this edition, we have exclusive interviews with technological whiz kid and probable future on-line entrepreneur, Alex Panagis, film-maker Mohab Khattab and US Ambassador William Roebuck, amongst others.

Check out snippets from our exclusive Backseat Chat interview with Abbas Al Mosawi (also available as a video podcast online) as he spills the beans on his passions and inspirations in life.

Ramadan provides an excellent opportunity to spend time with family and friends in the evenings, enjoying a meal, entertainment and socialising into the night. The Kingdom offers many venues where you can relax and engage in casual conversation, from the tents erected at major hotels, to cafés with sheesha and local restaurants. It's a time to chill out, and this BTM feature will highlight where to go and how to find the best deals around town.

Wherever you go during the course of the month, take time to enjoy the great way of life that the Kingdom has to offer.