Dubai - Day 2

Dubai Travel Blog

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Ibn Batutta Mall

The next morning I awake at 8am. I take a hot shower due to lack of cold water. Then I survive breakfast without suffocating and step outside into the heat again. My first stop for today is Ibn Batutta Mall. Thinking the taxi ride would take only about ten minutes I´m quite surprised to arrive at my destination half an hour later. If you look at a map of Dubai it doesn´t look that big but the city actually spreads quite far.

A taxi ride from the Old Town of Dubai to Ibn Batutta Mall costs about $12, for those who are interested.
My taxi driver introduces himself as John and just like all other who drove me before him he is from Pakistan.

future projects
John is quite a bit of a character. Since the initial silence bores me after a while I start doing some small-talk. Now there is no holding back for John. He asks me if I´m British, ignores my negation, and keeps on talking about the British with great gusto. He tells me how much he admires Britsh people for being so generous. He is especially taken with one particular Briton whom he had to drive to Abu Dhabi and also this place and that place. With an umistakable hand movement at his crotch he tells me that what the guy from Britain liked most were "massages". Obviously the Briton even invited John to this "massage parlour" paying all the costs. And this is what he´s bragging about for half an hour now, thereby occasionally fumbling around his private parts to indicate what sort of massage he and the Briton enjoyed.

After having managed to shake off John ("If you like massage, just call John") I finally enter the Ibn Batutta Mall, a huge shopping arcade that has a Turkish, Chinese, Egyptian, Indian and Moroccan section and is decorated accordingly.

Ibn Batutta Mall
Shopping between potted palm trees and artificial skies. After a couple of hours of window shopping, marvelling at high ceilings with huge candelabra I step outside again this time getting hold of an uncomplicated taxi driver. He drops me of in front of the Burj Al Arab, waits till I have taken some pictures and then drives me to Jumeirah Beach Park. Jumeirah Beach Park is one of the few public beaches in Dubai. Public meaning that it does not belong to one of the hotels. The entrance fee to the park is a mere 5 Dirham. Since it is Friday today (which is the same as Sunday in the Western world) the beach is very crowded with both tourists and locals. I put on my trunks and dive into the lukewarm water. It is so warm that the refreshment is limited to the first ten seconds, after that it´s like lying in a bathtub. But nevertheless it´s very nice to enjoy the sun and watch the people. Opposed to the dress code in the city, people on the beach are NOT allowed to wear long trousers and if a guy does so, then baywatch guy makes use of his loud and annoying whistle.
the whole city is a construction site
This dress code of course makes an exception for Arab women who get inside the water fully dressed which is an interesting sight, wondrous and awe-inspiring.

A few meters to my left lies an Asian beauty in a revealing rather than hiding bikini. Men walking past seem to be transfixed by the girl´s curves. Some even stop in their walking to gloat on her. Poor girl?!

Shortly before the sun touches the horizon I get a taxi back to the hotel. Since I  have already checked out this morning I can´t take a shower in my room but my friend Nora at the reception suggests to take a shower on the roof of Golden Sands 5 where they have a pool and a shower.

in front of the Burj Al Arab
He even calls there to check if this is alright for me to do and even gets somebody to show me the way. What a service! After feeling semi-refreshed due to another hot shower I hail a taxi which brings me to the Emirates Mall.

One thing that shouldn´t be missed while in Dubai is a drive on Sheikh Zayed Road during the night. Skyscraper Road would be more appropriate. My driver lets me know that the son of Sheikh Zayed, Mohammed or so, promised to build 500 (!) skyscrapers along this road in honor of his father. About 150 have already been built, more to come. Most beautiful are the Emirates Towers and of course - now highest building in the world -  the Burj Dubai.

Sheikh Zayed Road with its ten lanes and the skyscrapers piling up on each side leaves you with an image of an unreal silhouette and a toylike city.

skiing in the desert (in Dubai Mall)

Arriving at Emirates Mall, the biggest mall in Dubai, I encounter happily veiled men and women indulging in happy skiing. Seeing people speeding down the slope and throwing snowballs in each others faces at 0°C while the outside temperate is 45°C is a weird sight. As if it was the most normal thing in the world to have a snowball fight in the desert.

I do some more window shopping and browse through some books on Dubai reading about things I´ve seen, things I haven´t seen and things I wouldn´t ever want to see.

Around 10.30pm I get a last taxi to the airport. My two days in Dubai are coming to an end. Conclusion: Another place to tick off.

strangemystic says:
Hallo Mike!
es awr wirkilch sehr erheiternd!
Gruss, D.
Posted on: Oct 05, 2009
the_bloodsucker says:
hahaha! i always enjoy reading your blogs, buddy! =D
Posted on: Jun 18, 2008
JeAr says:
fist off, that John driver/massage afficionado was creepy lol... very nice blog. funny as usual. u write very well :-)
Posted on: Apr 21, 2008
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Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
future projects
future projects
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
the whole city is a construction s…
the whole city is a construction …
in front of the Burj Al Arab
in front of the Burj Al Arab
skiing in the desert (in Dubai Mal…
skiing in the desert (in Dubai Ma…
Jumeirah Beach Park
Jumeirah Beach Park
Burj Dubai, the highest building i…
Burj Dubai, the highest building …
Emirates Towers
Emirates Towers
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall
Ibn Batutta Mall, palm trees under…
Ibn Batutta Mall, palm trees unde…
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photo by: vances