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Monday, December 10, 2007

Some pictures I like...

We had a unique situation a few weeks ago when I ran down to the store and Mark stayed in the apt. We both had cameras so we took pictures of each other!
This is my view from down at the Marina Walk. He is circled in each shot.
This is me from his view. I'm circled in orange.

I don't know what kind of car this is but it was very cool. Sorry the quality is poor, I took it while I was driving with my cell phone. I have been told, again, not to take pictures while I drive....

Winter Wonderland

Dec. 5-6

Alright, I have decorated our home, I finally found some Holiday scented candles, I have a Xmas play list on the ipod, Mark was home this past weekend, we cranked down the a/c and broke out our first holiday movie, "National Lampoons Christmas Vacation"... the next day we were ready to hit the town and take in the sites!

We first headed to Souk Madinat because the Dubia International Film Festival (DIFF) was due to kick off and George Clooney was suppose to arrive today! (We think we saw his helicopter landing on the Burj Al Arab!)

Plus the mall was hosting a Winter Wonderland that I wanted to check out. They did a really nice job tastefully decorating the inside mall...

...and going over the top (as much as Arabs can) decorating their Winter Wonderland, that they charged 20aed each to enter (~$5-6).

(I've finally figured out how to 'stich' photos! Now I can offer panoramics!)

And again, they did a good job trying to please the masses but they can't get everything right I suppose.
There was this little stage that had a variety of characters performing; the Grinch (not the best), a xmas girl who sang quite nicely, little elves that were done fairly well, a acrobatic /break dancing Santa (w/ a twin to the left in a sleigh charging for pics). And then there were these 3 absolutely frighting Snowmen!! We both love snowmen and give much leeway to the country and culture for reaching out and really trying in an area they know nothing about; I mean, the Grinch who stole 'Christ'mas & 'Snow'men. I guess you find a few references and go but they really should have looked further than 'Jack Frost'


Watch out Grinch! They are coming to get you!! ooohh - that's spooky!

After That we went up to Mall of the Emirates and roamed around. They were surprisingly lacking in decor considering their size. Some of the stores were decorated but that was all. I guess you can't blame them, its really not their holiday.

That snow is made from little styrofoam packing balls! Do you realize how much of that was needed? Now that is commitment! I bought our tree from them.

Happy Holidays! Enjoy your week!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Dec 2

aahhh - Another beautiful sunrise.

Its Christmas Time!!

Dec 5

Well, we hover in the mid 80s during the day and drop to around 68-72 at nite. Its is quite nice. Makes it a little harder to get into the spirit but to help out we have decorated for the holidays!! We have a total of 4 decorated trees, candy canes and some lovely holiday cheer shipped from the states. :) (thanks Missy)
I was finally able to find some scented candles which helps as well, I think we will be watching a Xmas movie when he gets in tonite.
Our bar is feeling festive and a few of the guys even dressed up.
My messy desk(thanks Van & Jerry)...
Oh - this is the camel I bought Mark. We haven't named her yet. Oh, and of course Mr. Santa Potato!

These were taken in the toy store at one of the malls

Its a really cool store actually.
This is in Mercato Mall and is the most festive place I've found so far. They did a really good job with the decorations!
Everyday I go out I'm more and more surprised at the amount of decorations around. All of the grocery stores have a decent sized section and today I actually found LIVE xmas trees! They were very 'Charlie Brown' but hell, I never thought in a million years they would ship in pine trees to the desert. hahaha - awesome.


Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving in Dubai 2007

Nov 22

Mmmmm... turkey!! :p

We were invited to celebrate Thanksgiving with some of Mark's coworkers. We had a fabulous time. The weather here is even warmer than home so we were able to eat outside! Although Mark and I normally do when we eat with my side of the family no one we were dinning with had ever done that. We had people from Virginia, Texas, Tennessee, Venezuela, and Rotterdam in the Netherlands. It was quite a diverse group.
The evening was wonderful full of great food, friends and entertainment. There were numerous games and tricks that blended well into the evening keeping everyone in laughter.

Everyone had a unique place card so they knew where to sit:

The spread:

The table was set, everyone was present and the food was ready. All except the cranberries. These were intentionally saved for the last. Everyone was gathered around and silenced. We were all here to witness and experience the "shhlllluurppphggaa" as the cranberries fell from the can.

It was indeed an inspiring event - some felt the pledge or national song was in order... the majority opted for the food!

Again, a very nice mix of people and nationality. It appears that we subconsciously decided to share the holiday and honor our large section of Dutch by partaking in Heineken as our drink of choice. (just an odd coincidence)

We contributed too - I channeled Mom in order to make these beautiful deserts!

I also made some homemade mashed potatoes, turkey gravy (from the jar of course) and, I'm ashamed to admit, the ugliest, borderline edible deviled eggs ever to come from our family. It actually took me two batched of eggs to get them cooked - the first batch came out poached (for lack of a better description) and the 2nd batch were just barely cooked enough to eat but not really enough to peel well. Oh it was terrible!! We have a flat-top stove and I just can't seem to get the hang of it.

I was definitely not the only deserts in the house, we had a beautiful showing from little pilgrim hats to homemade, authentic Dutch Apple Pie - YUMMY! There are pictures on my web page

We had numerous wonderful toasts.

Once dinner and deserts were done we were amazed and entertained over and over by the nose of a Dutchman. 9 coasters were laid out, he would smell someone's hand (very intently), walk away from the table while the person touched a coaster, he would return, smell the coasters, call up to Allah and could eventually pick out which one had been touched, everytime. We mixed all kind of things up and couldn't stump him!!

Bob had seen the trick many times before and couldn't figure out how he did it. James was new to it but it was simply eating him up inside not knowing. They begged and pleaded for the man to reveal his ability. Finally his price was named: the boys both had to shave off their beards! They both instantly agreed and ran upstairs...

This only broke the ice, soon other amazing talents were showcased, some were busted but all were a good time!

The night was wrapped up with a lovely song written to the tune of 'The 12 days of Xmas'. Everyone was passed out their verse in secret and told only to reveal it when our turn came in the song.
I give you:

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Nov 13

haha! Check out my new Drivers License! No test was required, just some paperwork. They recognize standing licenses from the US, UK and European Union as well as a few other countries. Sweet!

Well let's see... what have we been up to lately??

Nov 2

It rained the other day!! Well, it sprinkled for a bit. It was actually cloudy for two days and then we got some sprinkles, it was cool. The sky and the feel of the air was very reminiscent of home, it was nice.

Since the weather was so nice Mark and I took a stroll on the beach after breakfast.

We saw my famous urban beach camels...

There were some rock'n waves...

Okay, maybe 'rock'n' is a bit strong but the Gulf was definitely more turbulent than normal... its not like you get better in Galveston...

This was one of many surfers 'hangin'10'??

I guess these people didn't want to pay for a beach front hotel, and hell why should they? Look at their sweet digs!!
This is a very small section of the vanishing free beach on this stretch of coast. It never occurred to us to bring a camper but there are no indications that it isn't allowed. They had quite the set up with music playing and everything.

It was a lovely day - here is another one of us in the surf.

Let me just leave you with one last image that continues to scar us everytime we go the beach...

The dreaded MAN-KINI!!(TM)