On to Dubai
Trip Start Jun 13, 2010
35Trip End Jul 17, 2010
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So I decided to go back and get my computer stuff to do some internet for the first time of the trip – it cost almost $8 for one hour – ouch!!
I ate at the breakfast bar again with their great juices but did not eat as much as yesterday. I was to meet Hilal at 9:00 in the lobby to go to Dubai so I had my daypack ready and read a little of the English paper from Dubai. Hilal came a little late and informed me that I would be staying in Dubai tonight and that I needed to pack. This was a surprise but it made sense as he wanted to leave for Oman from Dubai the next morning. So I had to run upstairs to throw everything in the big bag quickly (and made it weigh around 60 lbs now). I felt sorry for the bag boy who was an older Indian man for having to carry my bag but Hilal insisted (so that he could get a little tip). I just so use to doing my own stuff that having other people get my bags seems elitist.
So in Hilal’s car we went for the 1 hour drive to Dubai. Normally it would take 1.5 hours to get there but Hilal has a lead foot. We went around Dubai on the Outer Perimeter which is a little longer but no traffic
Hilal went off to work and told me to get a cab to the Mall. However, we had a few small problems – one, I still did not have any Emirate money and two, for some reason my cell phone could not make outgoing calls (only incoming). So I sat in the hotel lobby deciding what to do with myself for the next several hours. I then went to the desk to ask if there was an ATM close by and she said at the Mall. "How far is it?" was my next questions. She said it was only 15 min. walk. Now usually for me, that is an easy walk. But this is Dubai with record high temps of around 115. I decided to go for it. Besides the heat, the entire area is one big construction zone so dust was everywhere.
The first thing I saw was the large silver tower that is Ski Dubai with the mall under it. Now the hard part was finding an entrance – Dubai is like America where everyone drives everywhere
Inside, Hilal gave me a call to meet him at a place called Dubai Internet City. Now, I thought this was a shop, but it turned out to be a large area of Dubai. So instead of taking a Taxi – again, the cheap part of me comes out – I decided to take the newly build Dubai Metro which had a station that was called Dubai Internet City – Presto!!! An easy ride over – and it was. Though it was not too cheap at $3 just to go one station. This is where things got interesting. Remember, I cannot call out from my cell phone so I had to wait for Hilal to call
He took me to a restaurant inside the building that was popular with all the expats (I think Hilal was the only native Arab in the place). He was there to smoke his Shisha and eat a little lunch. We had a great mint salad, hummus, and Kebabs. So far my plan to lose weight in Arabia is not working as Hilal is feeding me too well. From here we went to his office down the road where he works for DU, a Dubai telecom company. He said he would be 10 min. but it took him almost an hour to get his work stuff. No problem for me as I took a little nap since misplacing Hilal in 115 degree heat wore me out. Hilal came back and still had more work to do so he got me a taxi to take back to the hotel to get a nap – he can’t wait to take his two weeks off soon as he is working too hard.
Back at the hotel I had a good sleep for a few hours until Hilal woke me up. It was around 6:00 now and he wanted to take me to the Dubai Marina for dinner and drinks. Since he was very tired we took a 15 min. taxi ride there. I have to say, I’m usually the outdoor type where cities don’t mean that much to me, but the Marina district was second to none. Dubai has this marina right in the middle of scores of skyscrapers. I bet a boat dock here is quite pricy
After dinner I took so pics and video of the place and then we went to a sports bar where Hilal had another Shisha and I had a strawberry shake. I try not to look at the prices of these places as it would send me into shock. After this we took a taxi back to the hotel. Hilal was very tired and went straight to sleep. I tried the wireless internet in the hotel lobby but it was so slow I could not upload one pic – frustrating. So after an hour of this, I hit the sack too. Tomorrow we are off to Oman for the weekend.