A vivid eye - witness account of the total transformation of a Bedouin society into a country with the world's highest per capita income within only 30 years. The author speaks with great frankness about his own life and career and about the role of the British in his country. Born in 1948, in Abu Dhabi, Mohammed Al Fahim knew dreadful poverty for years before fabulous oil wealth transformed his country forever. He grew up in the ruler's palace, barefoot like his playmates, now senior figures in the United Arab Emirates. Mohammed skillfully weaves the story of his own successful business career with that of the development of Abu Dhabi to which he himself has made a significant contribution.