Published: July 28th 2012July 28th 2012
Addi at Grand Central
the delicious juicy burgers and sweet potato fries
Thursday. Ugh. One of the longest days of the longest week ever. So many reports due, so many things to do, and all I wanted was to end this week and enjoy my weekend. I enjoy all the work, but it IS exhausting! I finished what I could of the two remaining reports, and left them with another engineer with instructions about the two things remaining before getting them out. I pray that they were sent. I guess I will know in the morning....
So, Jamie came to pick me up around 4:30 to go to Abu Dhabi. She was hosting a luncheon the next day for some friends and I decided to come down with her to help her prep. Oh, I actually got to drive! First time in two months! She had a conference call, so she asked me to drive and her coworker, who came with us, set up some equipment while keeping me company. It was good to drive. I was a little nervous because of all the crazies here, but she said it is a straight shot to AD and her only concern was that I may fall asleep at the wheel. Ha - as
Goldfish - $5 a bag!!!!!!
If anyone sends me a package, I demand lots of goldfish (and pumpernickel sticks)
if! Oh, but after half an hour of straight highway, desert scenery and her urban cafe music turned down low so she could talk on the phone... yeah, pretty dang boring! I can see why sleeping is a concern!
So, we made it to Abu Dhabi and we were to meet Addi at a cute little organic restaurant. I was excited. When we walked in, it felt like any pantry type place you'd find in California, but it was Kiwi I think. I ordered a shrimp linguini and iced tea. While waiting on our meal, we planned the menu for the dinner party and the grocery shopping list. Then we were done and waited for our meal. And waited. And waited. I had a straight view of the kitchen and we had waited for longer than half an hour, and there was next to no one in the restaurant. I even saw Addi's burger sitting on the warmer for at least ten minutes. Jamie finally called over the waiter, then the manager came over and told us, first that it was too dusty in the kitchen, and then that they had no gas. We were very annoyed. I mean,
Evening prayer and food
Every evening, the mosque provides free food for the workers
it's understandable that sometimes these things happen. But they knew we were waiting and did not have the courtesy to tell us. We waited for more than 45 minutes and who knows how much longer they would have kept us waiting until we (Jamie) said something.
So, we walked across the street to this burger place Jamie and Malik had mentioned on the ride down and decided to give it a go. I got a well done burger (it came with gobs of mayo - ew!), sweet potato fries and a drink. The burger was quite delicious and juicy (again - people here have no problem making me well done burgers - so no more excuses from you people!!!). Then we went to Lulu's supermarket and got as many of the supplies as we possibly could. I got a lot of fruit for the fruit salad - they were pretty cheap and I got so excited about grocery shopping for my own place. We came home to prep while Addi got the remaining missing groceries - apparently there was no cookie mix or brownie mix anywhere in the city, so Jamie improvised and made some delicious brownies out of cake mix. She also made a baked ravioli. I was in charge of the fruit salad, and other fruit and veggie chopping. Oh, and jello shots of course. ;)
After a small glass of wine while prepping, I found myself getting very sleepy. The week of work took tons out of me and I laid on the couch for a minute, just to rest, and next I knew, I was out like a light! The little fleece blanket was all I had, and I didn't stir until 6:30 am (brief interruption at about 4am with the call to prayer). We finished our food prep, and then people started to arrive right on time. Jamie's friends are very fun and nice, so it was a great time. We played bingo, where I won a lamp (great for my apt) and a book (one that Addi recommended to me). I loved how everyone knew how Jamie plays games - she can be the best and worst person to play with. She is more than competitive - she takes advantage of everything she possibly can, borderline cheating, but everyone knows to watch her. It definitely makes the games more interesting!
Later, we went out to an expat bar far from downtown called Cooper's. As soon as we arrived, Jamie asked a waiter to send a note to the next table full of guys "Why do you all have mustaches?" They were obviously military, most likely American, and so we exchanged notes for the first part of the evening. I also had a burger here - wow, I had almost no meat this week and now I had two burgers in two days. Yes, I really liked Jamie's friends, and I hope to hang with them more in the future.
Today we slept in, eating brownies for breakfast, and then watched a marathon of Shameless, a Showtime show that I was instantly hooked on. I actually watched the entire second season, which lasted until 6pm. At one point, the family was eating a bucket of chicken, so we got some KFC delivered. Yum. After the marathon ended, Jamie drove me to the bus station, where I went to buy my ticket to Dubai, was ushered into the ladies' only line (only three people as opposed to 15), got my ticket for 15 dirhams, walked outside to the waiting buses, was directed to the bus for the Ibn Battuta mall, and waited for five minutes before we left. There were only five people on the bus, only one of which was a guy, and so I felt very relaxed, turned up the A/C, and read my kindle. when we arrived at Ibn Battuta, about an hour later, I got the metro, sitting near the front of the train, and shortly arrived at my hotel, where I ordered my favorite falafel wrap.
Now, I am doing some laundry and packing for my move. While watching the very first episode of Shameless...