I just got back from Dubai. (I stupidly forgot to take my camera, so I don't have any photos). I think that I have successfully found a car, and if everything works out, I should have it late next week or early the next.

Dubai seemed like another world from Al Ain, not just because it is so much bigger, thought that is certainly part of it. My only other experience in Dubai was landing at the airport and then immediately riding to Al Ain (and at midnight at that), so I seen nothing of Dubai before. And while on this trip I only visited just a few places (the bus station, a bunch of used car dealers, the Deira City Center mall and a little bit of walking around), but I did get to ride through a good bit of the city (mostly because one of my cab drivers got lost). I don't think that I have ever seen so many contruction cranes in such a concentrated area. There is so much contruction going on all at once, it almost feels like much of the city is missing, if that makes sense. I guess by that I mean that the huge gaps where the construction is taking place made me feel like things were missing.

But walking around the mall also felt very different. There were so many more expats than nationals, it almost made it feel as if I was in a different country. I think that I understand more SecretDubai's comment about my being lucky to be in Al Ain and having a chance to experience the culture here in a way I couldn't in Dubai.

The other thing that surprised me when I thought of it was that about early afternoon I was thinking, "I'm ready to go home" but I meant Al Ain. It is amazing how quickly I have come to think of this as home, which I suppose is another sign of how warmly I have been welcomed here.


SAfrican said...

Watch those second hand car dealers - if you thought the used car salesmen in your home country was 'good' you have not see anything yet Some of my friends have walked into some real 'deals'.

Mohammed said...

I read some where that something like 20% of world cranes are in Dubai.

I like the idea of not condensing one area with a lot of building but spreading things around. Kind of like Phoenix Metropolitan Area in Arizona. You have little cities, Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, etc, spread around, and all low-rise building. It helps with traffic a lot.