What a busy week!
Sunday began with my usual session with Rama. It was tough – and it’s only going to get tougher if I’m going to finish that vertical marathon in 6 months!
Dad was out for lunch so Mum and I decided to try the Cheesecake Factory at the Dubai Mall. It opened while we were in Bali and I’d been wanting to try it for the last couple of weeks. It’s right opposite the Aquarium and is always crowded. I thought if we went on a Sunday it wouldn’t be so bad. We got there at about 1.45pm and still had to wait 10 minutes for a table. We eventually sat down and looked through the menu. There is so much to choose from – and the portions looked huge. So Mum and I shared the spinach and cheese dip to start with.
Then Mum had the pepperoni pizza and I had the herb-crusted salmon with asparagus and mash. It was really good – and I left most of the mash.
And then we shared an Oreo cheesecake for dessert. We were both full, but we couldn’t not have cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory. We couldn’t eat half the slice between us.
After that we wandered around for a bit, Dad joined us and we had coffee at Tim Horton’s.
That evening I’d booked a massage at the Emirates Grand Hotel. It was an online deal for a full body massage and pedicure – I’d bought it before my holiday and it was expiring in a few days. The spa at the hotel is on the 45th floor. My therapist, Preeya, was running late so I waited in the lounge for a while, flicking through magazines. She eventually took me through to the therapy room (we walked past dozens of rooms!) and told me to get changed. Each room has its own ensuite bathroom and I was given a gown and slippers.
Preeya hadn’t asked me what kind of massage I’d like so I just left her to do whatever she wanted. It was one of the best massages I’ve ever had. At one point, her knees were on the backs of my thighs and her hands were on my shoulder blades. She spent a lot of time on the knots in my shoulders. It was excellent. I asked her afterwards what kind of massage it was and she said it was a Hawaiian lomi lomi massage. I would go back for that. She then took me to another area for my pedicure (the pedicure was just average, but I didn’t care). I went home, had some dinner and went to bed happy.
On Monday morning I had a yoga class at home and then decided to go for a swim. I was at the pool for just half an hour as it was so hot! I worked all afternoon (I had the place to myself) and then went to Sukh Sagar for dinner with my parents (I had my usual palak dosa).
On Tuesday I went to the gym and worked all afternoon. That night I met a friend for drinks and dinner. We met at Aquara at the Dubai Marina Yacht Club. I’d never been there before and it was a fun place. The music was very 80s and 90s, reminding me of Lagos. We had a couple of drinks there and then went to Chinese Village (also in Marina) for dinner. The food was good (spring rolls, stir-fried chicken and lamb with black pepper sauce). After dinner we ended up at Embassy at Grosvenor House. Three new places in one night! We had a couple more drinks, bumped into some friends (I was told I resembled the Argentinian tennis player Gabriela Sabatini – that’s a first!) and eventually called it a night. I was home at about 1.30am.
My session with Rama on Wednesday morning was quite painful after my night out. I got home and was ready to spend the rest of the day working, but at about 12.30pm my dad started complaining about chest pains. He said he’d had them since about 10am – my mum gave him some Gaviscon but the pain persisted. My uncle came over a while later and we eventually decided to call an ambulance. I was so impressed – the paramedics were at our door in under 5 minutes. I didn’t think Dad was having a heart attack – he had no other symptoms (sweating, nausea, vomiting, upper body pain). I also think a part of me has been mentally prepared for this for a while now: all those years of unhealthy living are bound to catch up with you eventually. Anyway, the paramedics did an ECG and decided that as it was the first time Dad was experiencing this to take him to hospital to be checked out properly. My uncle went in the ambulance with Dad, and Mum and I followed in the car.
We went to Rashid Hospital – Kaleem took us to the A&E section (which also has valet parking, by the way) and we met Dad and my uncle there. They did another ECG and we waited for the doctor to show up. Dad stayed in his cubicle while the three of us went to have a coffee and a bite to eat. I had the chicken pasta salad – it didn’t look very appealing in the plastic container but after it was heated up and put on a plate it was surprisingly good.
We went back to see Dad – he’d been told that he would need a chest X-ray and a blood test and they would determine a course of action once they had the results. Dad was in less pain at this point and his blood pressure was normal. My uncle and I went home intending to go back later in the evening.
The blood test results showed that his cardiac enzyme levels were elevated so they wanted to re-do the blood test a couple of hours later. My uncle and I went back to the hospital at about 8.30pm and the doctor told us the second blood test results were normal. The problem wasn’t heart-related and he could be discharged. He told my dad that he should avoid spicy food and take it easy for a day or two. We were home a little after 9pm.
Will this episode have scared my dad into taking better care of himself? Unlikely.
On Thursday afternoon I went to get my hair coloured – it really needed to be done. After I was finished I decided that I needed to find a better hairdresser. Each time I’ve been to the same guy at the Fairmont I’ve been disappointed. I’m ready to try somewhere else!
That night I went to wine club at the Radisson Blu in Media City. I went with a friend and we met some other friends there. We had a good table – I ended up sitting next to a couple from London and we had a good laugh together. There was one white wine (Sauvignon Blanc), two roses, two reds and a sparkling wine (I don’t have the tasting notes yet!). There wasn’t as much mingling afterwards as at previous events but we were still there till 1am.
Friday was a write-off. I was in my pajamas all day, did some work and watched ‘Suits’. I was supposed to meet a friend and one of her friends for a drink that night but wasn’t feeling up to it.
Saturday was busy – I was at the gym in the morning, and my parents had organised a lunch for some of their banker friends and their husbands/wives so I went with them. We had lunch at Dynasty, the Chinese restaurant at the Ramada in Bur Dubai. There were 10 of us at the table – and there was far too much food: spring rolls, steamed dim sum, and a fried mushroom appetiser to start with; crispy aromatic d
uck followed; then we had chicken in black bean sauce, fish in ginger and spring onion, and sizzling lamb for our main course. There were also some veggies and noodles. Dessert was red bean pancakes and a fruit platter.
Straight after lunch I rushed to book club – but I didn’t rush enough and was 10 minutes late. I’d forgotten how long it took to get to there. We were six women, each talking about the books they’d read over the summer. I headed home after that.
One of my parents’ friends came over for a while that evening and once she’d left I got into my pajamas and watched more of ‘Suits’.
I love my life.
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