Saturday, April 21, 2012

Back To School? But Break Was So Much Fun?

Meg and I

View from the dhow cruise
Well, we're about to start week three post-break and so far the time is flying. I barely remember last week and I can only hope that the rest of the year goes by as fast. I've been very fortunate in regards to work. Being a pull out support teacher definitely has its advantages, the biggest of which being the fact that I get to work with a variety of age groups. For the most part the kids are really sweet, with a few terrors thrown in there to keep me on my toes, but that is the same in the states. There are already a few that I really enjoy and look forward to seeing. (Yes, some of them are the terrors!) Enough about work though, I've done a lot of fun stuff over the last two weekends and that's way more exciting.
Dessert 4 wheeling
Hadi made me hold a bird
     As I imagine you've heard, my boss is from my home town. Her two daughters came to Abu Dhabi for a week over break, so I got to meet and hang out with them, which was a great time. Her youngest was high school buddies with my great friend Sarah, so it was a lot of fun to chat with her. Since Lisa was trying to fit in so much fun stuff for her girls, I was able to tag along and do a lot of this cool stuff as well.  We went on a dhow cruise that left out of Oman just outside Fujairah, went four wheeling in the dessert, and made a visit to an Emirati farm.  
Horses at the farm
     The dhow cruise was really nice and relaxing, but we had a bit of an adventure on the way there. We didn't realize that the boat was leaving out of Oman, which for those of you unfamiliar with the Middle East, is another country! So my friends and I drive 2.5 hours and between the three of us we have a passport, a UAE ID card (sort of acts like a passport/enhanced drivers' lic.) and a UAE driver's license. We didn't even think to bring any ID because we didn't realize we would be going through border control. I always have mine with me as I do not yet have my UAE ID card. Naturally, we assumed we are screwed and will probably be turning around for another 2.5. We decide to give it a whirl and the guy at border control is actually super nice and makes an exception because we had driven so far. I firmly believe if we had only driven the hour from Dubai, we would have been making a U-turn! Crisis was averted though, and we enjoyed a sunny day lounging on a boat, eating and snorkeling. 
Rocking my keffiyeh
My new friend 'Twiggy"
     The next day, Lisa's Emirati friends took us four wheeling in the dessert, followed by a nice visit to an Emirati farm. There we held birds, rode a horse and hung out with a dog I affectionately named twiggy. It was an amusing night to say the least, complete with photos taken while sitting in front of a painting of horses and holding a toy gun and toy violin-type instrument. As I read this back, it doesn't sound that funny, but trust was! We were all crying by the time the photos were done. 

Ready for the Eagles!!
   That was my last hoorah before break was over, but don't worry, I did a lot of fun stuff the next weekend as well! On the 12th (mom's bday) I 
Blurry, but those white blobs are the Eagles!
Fireworks after the concert
went to see the Eagles live in Dubai. To say that this was the best $100 I've spent since I've been here is a gross understatement. This was by far the most amazing concert I've ever been to. Partly because it was the Eagles, and I have grown up listening to and loving them and partly because it was the first time they have ever been to the middle east. There was this amazing energy in the crowd and it was spectacular to be a part of. Despite the fact that all the older people looked at me like "Does this girl even know who the Eagles are?" I enjoyed myself immensely....and sang every word to prove that, "Yes, I do know who they are and probably love them more than you!" They played Hotel California to start off their encore set and it was awesome! If you have never heard of the band, you at least know this song, and when it came on, the crowd energy definitely turned up a notch. Just as I was beginning to worry that they wouldn't play Desperado, they closed with it and I actually teared up listening to it.  Overall, it was the best experience I've had here and I am so glad that my friend Shannon asked me to go with her. They sound as great as they do on record and that is a pretty impressive feat for a group that has been together for so long!
Couldn't stop after brunch!
Mona, Mo and I at brunch
Mo and I at brunch
     The next day I drove into Abu Dhabi for boozy brunch number three and had a wonderful time as always. I got to hang out with the regular brunch crew as well as a few new additions. Mona's cousins were in town and they were a lot of fun to hang out with. We love Mona, so we love all of her relatives as well! This was a really good deal because we were allowed to float between all three restaurants at the Intercontinental hotel. Needless to say, we all left sufficiently stuffed and then spent the rest of the night hanging out and doing a little souk shopping!
     I'll leave the adventures of last week to a new post as I am sleepy and think this one is really quite long already! 'Til next time blog friends!

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