My Abu Dhabi Thoughts 2014

— The big smile of a laborer — because I know it comes from the heart

— The smell of shisha at a cafe — even though I don’t smoke

— The thrill of the city lights as they shine against the dark desert sky

— The willingness of a friend or a stranger to do almost anything — for nothing in return

— The way a friend from another country pauses to come up with the best word so I will understand them accurately

— The twinkle in an eye from a soul that has lived through tragedy

— The cheery conversation of two British kiddos during the morning school run

— The smell of foods I have never heard of — from countries I’ve never visited

Abu-Dhabi-Skyline

— How I secretly am drawn to the chaos of miscommunication

— That I have almost grown to appreciate the smell of oud

— That I could now compete on a game show and correctly guess a sentence understanding only two words

— When disaster strikes we all pull together empathizing with people and countries we have never met or visited

— I am addicted to the surprises that the UAE constantly offers

— Realizing I now understand global politics, history, relations and also realizing that many people don’t

— My empathy for others has grown enormously

— What I want is for everyone I love to feel/see what I am experiencing

— I have grown used to driving in the chaos of the UAE roads

— I feel a little lost without a National dress

— Mam/Sir doesn’t bother me anymore

— It saddens me to know that many people around the world are misinformed about life in the Middle East

— The slang words I don’t understand but am always willing to try

— I love rubbing elbows with people in the supermarket

— The smell of rain is like heaven

— I love unexpected friendships that pop up out of nowhere

— And most of all, I love seeing the world in my child’s eyes

IMG_0503

— My heart is full for the one we lost on a sad December day

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Thank you to the unknown artists whose photography and art I have used in this post.

8 thoughts on “My Abu Dhabi Thoughts 2014

  1. Beautiful blog, insights explained. I thought my frustrations here were making me a more narrow minded person but in fact you learn to embrace those frustrations, understand them and appreciate so many different things , different cultures, different nationalities and different hardships that I find it hard to relate to comments or blogs from people in my home country now as I find them narrow minded and annoying at times. It is such an eye opening place-to good aspects and bad aspects – but I think my family and myself will be better people from experiencing it. And it is a beautiful country with many beautiful people in it.

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  2. Hi Juliana, Thanks for reading! Oud is both and instrument and perfume. I looked up the spelling as I was writing and I could’ve added an h to it but I don’t believe it is the most common spelling.

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  3. Hi Sarah, in the beginning living here is frustrating. Then it becomes managable. Then it becomes ordinary. Then it becomes boring (according to my friends that have lived here 7+ years). Sometimes I struggle to see Abu Dhabi through “new eyes” because I have lived here for 3 years but I never want to my sense of awe when it comes to the experience because living here is extraordinary in so many ways. Thanks for reading!

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  4. Nice read, but 10 months in I still don’t feel these two points as much as you do:
    – How I secretly am drawn to the chaos of miscommunication – This still drives me mad. As do the taxi drivers way of driving

    — That I have almost grown to appreciate the smell of oud — Not sure this will ever appeal to me

    Lovely to see someone elses opinion of living here. Tx for sharing.

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    1. Hi Simone, Thanks for reading. Oud sometimes bothers me but less than when we first moved here. I love miscommunication. Unless of course, it is with the Etisalat guys!

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  5. I love this post. As strange as this may sound I relate a lot if it to Canada. Nobody realizes how ignorant most Americans are when it comes to their northern neighbors except those married to a citizen that have live a there like me.

    I love how you share a side of life in a country that te US government wants it’s citizens to deplore (that would be any nation with any Muslims). Maybe we can change things by breaking down stereotypes one blog at a time.

    Happy new year

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