Dubai : Desert Desserts...

"Good morning, we will soon be landing in Dubai. The local time is 6:26am, air temperature 35 degrees C..."

Finally the first leg of my emigration had come at last (of a two leg journey does that make it second last?) to a head. The following details my dallyings during a 17 hour stopover in the capital of the United Arab Emirates...

On local transport : The familiar 'Right of Way' sign on the back of the buses say simply, 'Thanks' with the image of a bus cutting off a car. Hear the horn & haul arse - it ain't suggestive - this bus brakes for nobody.
...and everybody. Driving here is flat stick, foot to the floor & hand on the horn - everyone is hooking hard up & down the highway swerving, jostling at speed across the five lanes each way. My sphincter is winking, desparate to gain grip through the seat of my pants to the seat below. Hang on. I got faith that the Auto behind the wheel has it all under control, which he does. It's up to me to relax, trust and enjoy the ride.

I feel a little strange, scrutinised by the eyeballs atop the bums-on-seats at the back of the bus as we journey into Deira, the old part of the city. I then see signs that set the scene for the first few front rows of seating; Reserved for Ladies. All eyes of the sausage-fest at the back of the bus heat hairs at the nape of my neck. The vibe is electric, but it's me who's charged. Ladies lounge frontside. Much respect.

Puff the magic Shisha
Got a small serve of dates from a street vendor sporting more dried fruits, seeds & spices than you could poke a cinnamon stick at. Such a concoction of colours, shades & smells that twist, mixing & mingling in my nostrils with such manic juxstaposition it leaves my head swimming harder than the Aussie Olympic swim team.

I chew the fruits and spit seeds.

Hot damn. Damn hot. I'm bent, bruised, cramped and keen. Keen? Uh-huh. I got a sweet coffee on the way along with a Shisha of sweet apple and strawberry. Damn fruity whatever it is. Three hot rocks the teenage moustachioed maestro sorted me with. Got a kinda fruity liquorice flavour without the headflipping kick of tobacco and soon I'm bellowing smoke like a rastafarian red dragon. Feeling pretty damn tough too.
Yeah! I'm smoking fruit outta the biggest damn bong I've ever seen.
Dubai - what a city, what a lady. One up Hoods.
And accross the cafe a caucasian couple and little daughter eye me with suspicion and distain as if I were some junkie. Feck 'em. 'Live it up', my sis terminates her chat with and thus here I sit spinning. Huh, it hit me after all...
Huh? A re-fill? Weeeellll, aiiiit.

Now I jumps online to buzz a few crew and the sista is online to share a few words with the wise. Cheers sis & wish you was here to share this shisha. I'm flamin' it fo' ya and all the crew - the Hot-Tens and Suffolk Massives, The Ippy Large and Downtown Vauge-As vagrants. Now she spins me a link to a surfshop/school here in Dubai - right next to the Hyper Glam Beach Hotel. This place gets waves! If my luggage hadn't been sent through I could've gone fishin in these Emeritial Waters. Would've, could've...

It's as I sit penning this that the unfamiliar drones of afternoon prayer echo out to mingle on the wind, tangling with the grinding whine of the heavy industrial Dubai Progressive Construction Orchestra... all this culminating in the definitive, nudge nudge wink wink - you ain't in kansas no more Toto.

Down at the 'creek', their reference to the main waterway in the city, I jump the railing down onto an off duty water taxi to make mates with Abu Kareem. After chatting in chunks of broken english the bloke takes me with as he fills up traverses the creek. Wouldn't take a cent from me, tells me to wait on the boat as he dashes off to bring back a steaming cup of the local coffee - wouldn't take a cent for anything. Super sound, what a champ. I stash him a good few coins and after my day touring in the city I hang about the jetty and wait.. sure enough he appears and returns me to the other side so I can get back to the airport. This guy made my day/short stay so special - all out Abu, you're a legend. Cheers bloke.

The desert exhaled and breathed sand across hot streets. I watch silent and smiling sitting in the 'Mens' section of the bus back to the airport.

I got dusted in Dubai.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published