The Arabian Gulf… or how I began the year

30 01 2009

After almost killing myself working during Christmas, the time to leave for the trip came… I found myself running around like crazy, forgetting a million things (including the usb drives), barely sleeping, living in two time zones once again, tired, stressed, wishing I had two more days to finish things and concerned that I was going to miss my flight…

But the day came, and because I am lucky to have the best friends, Channe came over to help me pack, clean my house, give me support, share some wine, and drive me to LAX…

And a few days later, I was in Dubai…

I was hoping to find more desert, a more “Arabic” experience… Instead I found myself surrounded by the tallest buildings, one way “freeways”, lack of parking space, shopping malls bigger than my city, tourist “tours”, random workers that only spoke english, or Urdu, Tagalog, and Punjabi… The Emiratis were a rare group, rarely seen out on the streets… They wore the traditional Desert clothes, and could be found carrying their kids, while their wives spent a fortune on clothes meant to be seen only by them… They were warm and friendly, and surprisingly accessible, even to me as a single women…. and not only them, but all the muslims I encountered… It is almost like they shared the same relaxed attitude of someone that is on vacation… they went on with their lives, thankful to be there, happy about the diversity, curious about our upbringing, but, more importantly, eager to tell me about where they came from…



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