Thursday (Day 19) was a long day.
My mum, our housekeeper and I needed to get our medicals done for our resident permits – and we needed to be in Sharjah by 10am. I haven’t woken up that early in almost a month. Dad said we’d leave home at 9.15am.
For some reason I woke up at 7.45 – I could hear Vinay so decided I’d sit with him for a while. He played with his animals and then with my hair for a while until his nanny took him downstairs for some fresh air and to see the resident cat. I got ready and was ready a little before 9. Neither of my parents were ready and we eventually left home at 9.30. We got to Sharjah at about 10.15.
The Public Medical Centre was packed. There must have been 100 people waiting there for their medicals. They were mostly men, and they were mostly Indian/Pakistani. Fortunately we didn’t have to join that queue and were seen in about 15 minutes.
First was the finger printing. This was done in one room which was divided into two sections by a screen – one side for men, one for women. My hands were sanitised with liquid soap and then placed onto a scanner. The lady did the four fingers of my right hand together first, then she did each finger individually, then the thumb, the palm, and the side of my hand. She did the same with my left hand. Apart from the ‘No photography’ signs, there were also signs for ‘No eating, drinking or smoking’ and ‘No mehndi’. It didn’t actually say ‘No mehndi’ but there was a hand with mehndi on it with a red cross over it.
Once that was done, I had my photo taken.
After a short wait, the three of us were taken to a changing room. The radiologist told us to get changed into the gowns provided and come into the next room one at a time. The changing ‘room’ was a white tiled cubicle, about 5 ft x 5 ft. It was tiny. And the gowns provided? Well, I have no idea how many people had put them on before us but there was nothing else. It was quite gross. We went to the X-ray room, one at a time – it took less than 3 minutes. And thank goodness, because I couldn’t wait to get out of that pink gown.
Then came the fun part. The blood test. I sat down, the woman tapped the inside of my elbow and stuck the needle in. Nothing happened. She tried again. And nothing happened. Considering that’s her job, she wasn’t very good at it. She looked at my other arm, shook her head, and then looked at my hands. She eventually stuck the needle in the back of my hand. It hurt like hell but she found blood. When she was finished, she told me I’d have to press it hard so that it wouldn’t bruise. I did that, but still developed a lovely bruise on the back of my hand. Not to mention the puncture wound where she stuck the needle.
After we were done with that, we headed back to Dubai. As we had hired a car and driver for the day, we decided to go to IKEA in Festival City and see what they had. I still needed bookshelves and side tables and a few other bits and pieces.
We stopped for lunch at a place called Bread & Co. They did have other things apart from sandwiches so I was OK. Food was average, service was terrible.
And then came IKEA. I’d never been to an IKEA before (can you believe it?). In a way, I’m glad I’d never been because I would have had to ship double the amount of crap that I did. We walked around and I finally decided on a bookshelf. It’s 6 ft x 6 ft and a brown-black wood. It’s huge and it’s lovely. I’m just not sure it’s big enough for all my books.
I found my side tables in the same shade of wood.
I also bought a desk lamp and files for my papers.
There was no way we could take the bookcase home in the car. Or even lift it. It came in four boxes and they were all bigger than me. After paying for everything, we took it all to the Home Delivery station – they would deliver that very evening and assemble the bookcase and side tables too.
It took two men almost an hour to assemble all three pieces of furniture. Again, Vinay was fascinated by what was happening in my room.
I think all I need now are lamps for the side tables and then I’m done. A successful day!
See more Dubai updates here.