Saturday, December 31, 2005

No Time Like the Present

Ok I couldn’t wait to start sharing so here we go with day one…

After waking up at the crack of dawn (high 5 to Hubby for deciding to call his family and talk to them at the top his lungs) we were off on our adventure. This “adventure” will heretofore be known as getting the heck of Delhi… err… Dodge. Yeah that’s it.

After a fairly short plane ride… No, before I tell you about that I have to mention that Emirates is a cool airline. Lots ‘o legroom for Hubby and individual consoles with movies and games for me. A win-win situation if I ever heard one! Go Emirates! Now back to your irregularly scheduled blog.

We finally landed in the Dubai airport, which Hubby had once dubbed Cloud City of “Star Wars” fame. Y’all have heard me go on about the airport in Amsterdam? Well his one was better. Seriously! But I’m getting ahead of myself because with a 12 hour layover we bee-lined out of Cloud City and into the Oasis of the Middle East: Dubai.

Those of you living in India will appreciate our first stop of the day: McDonalds! I ordered a Big Mac combo that consisted of what was probably the best Big Mac ever constructed. YUM! Living without beef for half a year (except for wonderful trips to ACSA courtesy of the Duke and other such benevolent friends with memberships) will leave a girl with a Mac Attack Craving the likes of which are rarely seen.

A few cool observations about Dubai versus Delhi. Or, the Battle of the D’s as I have decided to call it.

• Dubai drives on the US side of the road, which actually kind of threw me at first. But here’s the weirdest part: people actually drove on their side of the road, in their own lanes and without using their horns every few minutes. It was most disconcerting.

• Ugly architects need not apply. The buildings here are beautiful works of art. Skyscrapers with lotus blossom pinnacles and architectural details that reflected the movement and colors of the sea were only the beginning. What seemed like a concrete sail marooned on land was actually a hotel. The regal place just down the road was a freaking day spa. What a town?!

• Word up to my Canuck-ian readers: I had a white hot chocolate at Second Cup after lunch. A taste of home in the desert!

• A few moments of weirdness were had when we realized that there was nobody knocking on our windows asking for money. The lack of beggars was a pleasant diversion.

We don’t want to be Delhi haters but this, for me at least, was my first foray out of that town since our arrival in late summer. I love our home and friends here but traveling is always about noticing the differences and appreciating changes. It’s why we travel: why go places if you’re not going to enjoy the small and big changes that surround you.

For dinner we mozied over to the Hilton. We started off with drinks by the pool with our new friend the Desert Snowman. (Truly a weird sight.) Then we wandered upstairs to the Pan-American restaurant for more drinks – this time accompanied with salsa and chips. Hubby’s salsa is way better but it was an ambience thing.

Then things went downhill… at least for me. We went to this fabu Italian place in the hotel for dinner. Where, despite having what looked like heaven on a plate I could hardly eat a bite. Dammit! Hubby, of course, was not suffering a migraine and ate his bolognaise with relish and is still going on about how good that dinner was. Life is very unfair. Damn him.

Dubai at night is what Vegas might look like if it had way more class, less strippers, and no casinos. If that makes any sense.

Anyways, we made our way back to Lando and his Cloud City via taxi and spent our remaining hours in Dubai shopping at the Duty Free and talking about how great Christmas in Mauritius would be for both of us. (And not just because I think it rhymes.)

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