The Journey begins...

Cincinnati Travel Blog

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Happy to share a unique adventure thanks to a brave friend who is an American citizen living in Dubai. The sole regret of the expedition was that my wife did not accompany me.  I thoroughly appreciated her reservations, stemming both from current tensions between the US and Muslim culture as well as the notoriety the Arab culture has for shabby treatment of women. 


My gender provided a critical comfort level, but there were two additional reasons contributing to my expectation of “no worries”:  foremost from my impressions formed after four years of trading e-mail with my buddy Mark, and; reading the book “Arabian Sands”.  I feel “Arabian Sands” provides genuine insight into the Bedouin culture (most Emirati’s are bedouins).  Although potentially violent, I was left feeling that these people were exceedingly hospitable to polite, respectful people.  You will likely notice this piece is biased with a “no worries” attitude, but please know there was never a moment when I felt uncomfortable or threatened.  I truly believe this is a welcoming culture and I guess another motive for this preface is to encourage others to drop by this remarkable piece of the globe!


My friend Mark is an architect who met his wife, Samia, while attending college in Atlanta.  Both were pursuing advanced degrees in architecture - Mark his master’s and Samia her doctorate.  Samia is a native of Pakistan and that these two could transcend the biases of their different cultures to fall in love is a testament to their mutual self-confidence...and a lesson for the planet.


Another motivation was to try and comprehend the world Mark & Samia live in.  Though anxious to witness the Bedouin culture, I suspected it would be more of a homogenized international palette (at least in Dubai), rather than immersion in true Arabic culture.  I was interested to see how warm/humid the climate is…and Mark hinted at an excursion into Oman, so some adventure ahead!


Total seventeen hours of flight time to make Dubai, connecting through Gatwick, but it was rather pleasant.  I took mark up on his suggestion to book through Emirates Airlines, which is fantastic.  The wait staff sports berets and sashes, intriguing you with the possibilities to follow. They served a lunch including a trout appetizer plus a lamb entrée!  Sounds wonderful and although it was way above standard fare by the competition, at the end of the day it was still airplane food (i.e., the trout would have disappointed had I paid for it in a restaurant).

Lilliana77 says:
Hey Congrats on the feature! :D
Posted on: May 20, 2009
KeikoCreative says:
Congrats on your featured!
Posted on: May 20, 2009
honeymooner says:
Congrats :)
Posted on: May 20, 2009
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