Dubai is also known as the United Arab Emirates (UAE).This trip almost did not take place because of the possible high expenses I would incur. My friend, Caren had convinced Vince and I otherwise to do a stopover at this exotic spot in the Middle East. I suspected then it was for the shopping which Dubai is famous for. Then over a last minute planning meeting at Coffee Bean to book accomodation over the internet (we had booked our flight through a Thai friend long ago and procrastinated this for the longest time due to our busy schedules), we got connected to one big blessing for this trip - free accomodation! Imagine how much we had saved if The Lims had not come into the picture.
Thus the airport - impressive but the experience - oppressive.
Our horrendous nightmare was compensated by the incredible efficiency of the custom counter staff at Dubai Airport. I stress - EFFICIENCY. We breezed through the customs in less than 5 minutes compared to the minimum 45 minute-wait we had to endure at the Thai airport!
Just how rich is the nation of Dubai? After clearing the customs, we came across this exhibition of an ongoing lucky draw. The top prize is none other than a Porsche! Just to prove that this is not an isolated incident. Our host, Mrs Lim shared with us that a recent sale at a big shopping mall, the organisers gave away TEN cars on TEN consecutive days as top prizes. And these cars are as expensive as the Porsche above, mind you!
The Lims, knowing that our stay at Dubai was short, immediately whisked us to the dunes for a wild ride on All-Terrain-Vehicles (ATVs).
The top of the tentage at the reception area.
Janice, a fellow Singaporean who's working there as a female engineer at the famous The Palm construction project, myself and Caren.
On one evening, the 3 of us went over to Janice's apartment where she shared tales of her life as a single young female working in a male-dominated middle eastern country of Dubai. We were also told of gender discriminatory practices and interesting engineering problems (blood and gore included) that arose during the construction of the The Palm accommodation for the filthy rich and famous people around the world - David Beckam being just one of them.
David, the youngest member of the Lim clan, and myself on our ATVs. The sand looked a little wet because it had drizzled just before we got to the dunes. YES! It rains in Dubai! To think that the country was a completely arid and desert-like! The rain actually made the sand more compact and a little easier
My red buddy which served me real well. I just had not mastered enough courage to ride up the towering dunes - say, almost 6-10 storeys high.
Vince, Janice, Caren, myself, David and Mona (Mrs. Lim).To be continued next week??? Be patient lah!