Dubai: Week 6

Not a terribly exciting week: mostly work, some play… 

I had my Sunday morning session with Rama and that afternoon I was invited to tea at Fauchon by someone I know from London who has lived in Dubai for the last few years. She told me there would be 10-12 people there, but in fact there were probably 20 girls there. Most of them were ex-Londoners who now live in Dubai – it was almost like being in St John’s Wood High Street. 

I observed the following:

  • Even though the tea officially started at 4.30pm feel free to show up as late as you like
  • Get your hair done
  • Wear make-up (lots of it)
  • Don’t wear jeans
  • Pass the dishes around but don’t put any food on your plate
  • If you do put food on your plate, don’t eat it
  • Sympathise when people tell you how tired they are because they missed their afternoon nap

It was nice to be invited, being new in town and all, but I couldn’t see myself doing this every couple of weeks. 

Monday and Tuesday were spent at home working and going to the gym. After my Wednesday session with Rama, I went to More Cafe at MoE for coffee with some friends. It was nice to catch up in a smaller, less formal group. (That’s where I saw ‘toasted bums‘ on the menu, in case you were wondering.)

On Wednesday night, my parents took me to Ravi Restaurant. They had been raving about this place since I arrived – so we went for dinner. We couldn’t book – we just had to go and wait for a table and luckily we got one in 5 minutes. The restaurant looks like a canteen – the menus are stuck to the tables but protected by transparent plastic table cloths – and I didn’t want to imagine what the kitchen looked like. Mum said that perhaps we should have brought Joy with us – she’d have enjoyed it? I stared at her incredulously. ‘Are you kidding? First of all, she wouldn’t be able to stand the smell of the place. And second, she’d have gone home to get her cleaning equipment and started sanitising everything here!’ But when the food came, it was really good. We had kebabs, butter chicken, lamb chops. My parents’ rotis looked like naans and they looked delicious but I didn’t have any… 

On Thursday it was Mum’s birthday. She wanted to go to Bella Donna at Mercato Mall for lunch. It was a mall I hadn’t been to – but it is so much nicer than the other malls I’d been to. It didn’t have the same designer stores as the others, but it was less claustrophic and less crowded. I felt like I was in a piazza in Italy. And of course I loved the book theme they had going on…

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I thought the food at Bella Donna was good – it was a shame we had to sit indoors as they have a nice outdoor terrace, but it was just too windy/dusty that day. By the time we started lunch it was almost 2.30pm so we were the only people in the restaurant. I could see myself spending more time at this mall than the others though – it’s a nice place to have a coffee in the afternoon or just relax. And it’s close – I can see it from my bedroom window.

I had my last photography class at DUCTAC on Friday and met up with a friend for coffee afterwards. She moved here about seven years ago and we last met in London about three years ago. It was good to see her after such a long time! We would have met for a real drink but Friday was a ‘dry night’ – they weren’t serving alcohol anywhere. Something I’ll have to get used to, I thought.

That night, my parents, cousin and I went to see ‘One for the Money’ at Dubai Mall. Compared to London, I think movie tickets here are quite cheap (AED35 = just over £6). I’d read One for the Money years ago, while on holiday in Spain. It was laugh-out-loud funny. The movie? Not so much. There were a couple of laughs, but not enough to make me want to see the next in the series (if it ever gets made into a movie).

I spent all of Saturday organising my bookshelves. While unpacking I realised that I have so many books I haven’t read yet! Since then I’ve joined the Mount TBR Reading Challenge – I’m aiming to read at least 12 books in 2012 that I already own but haven’t read yet.

And that was week 6!

See more Dubai updates here.

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