The Oman adventure was over and only the drive back
to the UAE remained, punctuated by returning to a desert environment.Our entry back
into the UAE would be via Al Ain this time and things had changed from six
years ago.After displaying passports at
a border post we were instructed to park and enter a nearby building.Here John and I received eye scans, although
Mark got exempted. The eye scan is part
of a program to identify aliens who have been expelled from the UAE and attempt
to get back in.It was an interesting
and painless procedure.
In Al Ain we enjoyed
lunch at a Lebanese BBQ joint, but how odd to be back in the UAE.The contrasts between the two countries
received a serious exclamation point here.I was struck that this diner had the separate men’s area and family area
(where women or husbands with their family dine).Although I had been disappointed that women
weren’t being treated as equally in Oman
as I had anticipated, the return to the UAE reinforced Oman was
certainly more proactive on this front than most Arabic countries.
was a bit selfish.I relished the
presentation of complimentary trays of vegetables when dining in the UAE, but
only when they placed a basket brimming of olives, hot peppers and hummus on
our table did I realize this had been entirely absent in Oman.Absence makes the heart grow fonder and this
meal compelled me to curtail my complaints of hummus, lol. Getting to relish the bounty of a basket overflowing with fresh vegetables was treasured...almost like coming home again, lol!
Hahaa!! oh Vance..
I really respect that, actually. I try to sneak a few, but there's nothing that ruins the moment worse than whipping out a camera and telling everyone not to touch the food so you can get a picture! But the reward (particularly if you're not there to enjoy it with!) is drooling over a photograph of it for a lifetime! =) I really hope I get to travel with you one of these days!! =)