Untitled class article about Dubai

Posted on April 7, 2013

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The last vacation I spent out of the country was in Dubai. It was the second time that I went there; the first was when I was eight. I can’t recall exactly what it was like vacationing there. It seemed so long ago, like the last parts of a dream before waking up. Only the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes would bring me back to my eleven-year-old self spending a summer in the beautiful Arab country.

            The plane ride was very memorable for me. Some people might think plane rides are very mundane, but I don’t.  When the plane was just about to take off, I got these paranoid thoughts like plane crashes or sudden explosions in the sky. I think I even worried about people reading my diary if ever I die on the plane. As a wise and mature girl of eleven, I regretted that I didn’t write a will. But once I looked out the window, especially when the plane is already steady in the atmosphere, it’s like all my troubles were far gone. I was Aladdin on a magic carpet ride.

            I couldn’t remember how long the flight was, I think I slept through the whole thing. I could only remember lots of freebies like hot towels, blankets, slippers, and stuffed toys. My only instrument for documentation was a big, yellow camera which was given to me by a relative who found it in the woods of Canada. My relatives were your friendly, neighborhood Indiana Joneses.

            I remember seeing a lot of mosques in my relatives’ place in Sharjah.  These colorful mosques were of all shapes and sizes. Whenever I see those mosques, I think of two things: Hershey’s kisses and Aladdin. It was nice to take afternoon walks there, when everyone was praying and the place was a total Silent Hill.

            Dubai at night was very bright. In fact, when my relatives went driving in Manila, they felt “blind”. When it comes to city lights, Dubai could compete with Tokyo.

            The so-called “Wild Safari” ride in the desert was…not so wild. A ride through a carnival’s Tunnel of Love would seem bumpier, or wilder. I think the best thing about it was the view. Yep, nothing like seeing so much sand. Lots and lots of sand. But really, it was a nice experience.

            At the end of the “Wild Safari” tour, we were taken to some sort of traditional Arabian town. There was a bazaar, and a lot of camels. There were also pretty belly dancers everywhere. It was scorching hot in the morning and in the afternoon, but Arabian nights sure are cold.

            Going to Dubai won’t be complete without seeing the world’s first seven-star hotel, the Burj Al Arab. It looks very majestic, but I think the promotional pictures exaggerate its beauty a bit.

            Seeing a fellow Filipino in Dubai was a very nice experience. There were a lot of us there anyway, and that brief moment of recognition brought about that sense of community Juan dela Cruz would be proud of.

            Dubai can be very similar to cities here in the Philippines and at the same time be a whole new world: shining, shimmering, splendid.

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