Unbelievably, in 5 sleeps time, I will have been in Dubai for a year, and have been blogging about it only slightly longer than that! Honestly I cannot believe it. In some ways I feel like I arrived just yesterday, in other ways it feels like I have been here 25 years. For me feeling settled has a lot to do with making new friends, and we have been extremely lucky to have cultivated some wonderful friendships with some amazing people here. Of course this doesn’t stop me missing my “older” friends back home, not to mention my family. Whilst I think that good friends aren’t necessarily always the people you have known the longest, I do occasionally notice that there is something to be said for knowing people a long time. You can’t go out with new friends and do the “remember when” conversations like you might with old school friends or people that you have a long history with. Maybe that’s not a bad thing either actually, sometimes that can be all you have left in common with certain people. Anyway I digress, the point is that thanks to some great people, I am feeling content here in Dubai. The other thing that certainly helps is knowing where you are going, literally, everyday. I am not getting lost any-more, the street and place names on signs on the highway are no longer baffling and terrifying. This is a major relief let me tell you.
The other noticeable adjustment we have made is to the weather. Yes its stinking hot, and very humid at the moment, but whereas last year we found it completely enervating, this year it’s just what there is to deal with and it’s not really getting in the way. We are still jogging in the morning for example.
And we are loving our new villa, the extra space of the 3 bedroom, as well as the slightly bigger garden, has made a huge difference. It feels more like the home we left behind. The cats went out for the first time yesterday after being captive for 3 weeks post move, and the resident bird population are NOT impressed by the new arrivals let me tell you. William has already climbed the palm tree in an effort to catch a bulbul that has been driving him crazy this morning.
Last weekend was a long one what with Sunday being a public holiday (as mentioned before). So last Thursday night we went out to The Cavalli Club at the Fairmont Hotel for birthday drinks for a friend (yes it’s one of Paris Hilton’s favs). Having been warned that it is “rather expensive” Stuart and I ate something and had a couple of whiskeys at home before heading off in the taxi. Not being a big clubber any-more I haven’t spent too much time in the various night spots around town, but in true Dubai fashion the Cavalli Club is completely over the top.
Swarovski crystal strands draped in long curtains all over, velvet covered walls, black quartz tiles everywhere and zebra print chairs (its a supper club kind of arrangement). All in all a little overwhelming actually. And yes, definitely not cheap either.
We (the 4 of us running one tab) spent almost 800 dirhams (about 220 dollars) on 8 beers, 3 whiskeys, 2 glasses of wine and a vodka and tonic. To put that in perspective, 6 of us went to eat afterwards in the hotel, and that meal, including a bottle of wine, came to around the same. I mostly judge a place by it’s bathrooms, yes I know I am strange. My first impression of the ladies was not favourable at all. The entire room is floor to ceiling shiny black marble or something similar, and each mirror is surrounded by bright lights (as you would imagine a celebrities change room or something). The net effect of the lighting is a lot of reflection on the floor and walls, in fact I could not find the exit again, and I wasn’t even remotely drunk. But worse than that was the PLASTIC toilet seat and SINGLE ply toilet paper! Its details like that, for me, that make the difference.
Today we have the Feline Friends fund-raising lunch at Frankies. Last year, for some strange reason, I was the designated driver and didn’t have any wine, this year we will be taking a taxi and getting our money’s worth. Well it is for charity after all! 🙂
Have an awesome week!
image 1: from this blog
image 2: from the Fairmont Hotel’s website