8.31.2011

my adventure in Dubai

Did I tell you about that time I went to Dubai?
It all started when I found what seemed to be the perfect flight to Africa to visit my parents with two layovers in Dubai.  After hunting the web over for the perfect layover either in London or New York, having Dubai pop up in the search was a pleasant surprise.  The only downside was seriously silly amounts of time trapped in the airport.  I spent a total of 20 hours in the United Emirates although only a small fraction of that time was useable adventure hours due to overnight layovers.
 I started out my adventure by breaking the number one cardinal rule for single female travelers the world over. Warning bells and an inflatable 'idiot' sign should have bounced into position over my head as I followed a stranger into the parking structure and got into the back seat of his unmarked taxi cab.  I'd read online these guys were plentiful and harmless, but would charge much more than a regular taxi.  He did seem harmless and my gut instinct wasn't going into a state of panic so I threw caution to the fragrant jasmine wind, finagled a deal then set off with a very enthusiastic tour guide with great taste in music and a trunk to store my carry on.

My one thought for safety sake as I hopped into his car with all my pent up energy from the long flight was to stop and look directly into a security camera as if to say, 'Remember my face when they realize I've gone missing.'  Then I said a little prayer that I wouldn't end up in the trunk with my carry on and we were off.
We went to the Spice Souk first where the aromas of all the wonderful things for sale mixed with the local music blasting from the shops set the mood for the rest of the night.  We then drove a short distance along the creek to the Gold Souk neighborhood.
I could have stopped the tour right then and there to watch the restaurant boats on the Dubai Creek, but we had lots to see.
We went to the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and watched a water show set to more really great music.  Then we went to the largest mall in the world next door and looked at the massive shark tank.  I was quickly seeing firsthand how everything in Dubai seems to be out to be the biggest and greatest.
Next up, all the outrageous hotels, including Burj Al Arab {the 7 star hotel I'm standing in front of in the one photo I have of myself in Dubai}, The Atlantis and a few others that blend together in my memory filed under excessively expensive, rolled in extravagant and dipped in over the top opulence.
Burj Al Arab above, Atlantis below.
Was an evening wandering this beautiful city with an excitable Indian man worth the unshakeable feeling of suspended animation that comes with hours spent in an airport?  An enthusiastic heck yes!!  I've learned you have to make sacrifices for adventure.


And besides, the Dubai airport has showers and recliners so it wasn't all that bad.
 {photos borrowed from here, here, here, here}

5 comments:

  1. How fun! Yes, it is not smart to go with strangers in a car. But, you know me and going with strangers in a car so I can't judge!

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  2. Holy Mackerel!!! You Idiot!!!! But what a great adventure and what beautiful photos. Glad that you were perserved to share with stay-at-home lazybones like me. I am jealous.

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  3. you and tiffany {dancing branflake} have had the best luck with strangers in foreign countries! :) i'm glad you were safe AND got to explore the area. dannon almost went a few years ago to do a design job, but then the economy crashed and all the building slowed to a halt in dubai. ah well, maybe someday.

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  4. oh, and! that shark is crazy huge!!

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  5. only you Vickers can call me an idiot and make me laugh! And yes, I agree with you Kim. Tiffany has exceptionally great luck at finding nice strangers =)

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