Checking out the City

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Middle East » United Arab Emirates » Dubai
March 2nd 2022
Published: March 3rd 2022
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I was up early on Monday to explore the city. I started in the historic district with breakfast at a picturesque cafe and then wandered the streets and souks. Walking down the narrow streets that lead to mosques as well a small markets was lovely to explore. It was a short time that you didn't feel you were in a huge city.

I was able to find the metro to head to the worlds biggest mall. I quickly explored the gigantic mall complete with 1200 stores and an aquarium that you can scuba dive in. It is something to be seen, but talk about over the top compared to Uganda.

Just outside is the world’s tallest building; It’s so tall that it gets hazy at the top. I opted to not go to the top as I read you can only go part of the way up anyways. But, there is a fountain show outside that I stayed to watch. Dubai is similar to Vegas in the sense you can't tell the distance between areas because the buildings are so large. I got in 36,000 steps my first day, I had some sore feet at the end! I made a quick stop at the Jumeirah Mosque and then used the bus to get back to town.

The crime rate is very low here and I feel totally safe walking alone at night. I walked to and from my evening dinner cruise on the Dubai Creek without any concern for safety. I certainly have not spent two months here, but I miss the sense of caring that I had in Uganda. While it was certainly possible that someone might have stolen my phone out of my hand, there also would have be 5 other people I didn't know chasing that person down the street to recover it. But, that also might be village living vs. big city living.

On Tuesday I started the day with going back to the historic area that I enjoyed for breakfast and then prepared for my desert tour!

I am really glad I had the opportunity to get a bit outside of the city. We started with quad biking, which was certainly not like Jinja. They kept us in a contained area, for our own safety I'm sure. But, after that our driver took us boondocking (driving your SUV over the dunes). This was very fun, but I also see why they only allowed the trained guides to do this. We would down the steep side of a dune and I was just waiting to see a car flip in the sand. Our guide took us to the top of the dune for sunset and also for sandboarding (similar to snowboarding). But, he suggested we go down slide style which was much easier.

We finished at a safari camp for dinner and a traditional dance show. As Hope and Irene said, I saw the desert giraffes: camels. If I had more time, I would have gone deeper into the desert and stayed the night. Additionally, I would have gone to see camel racing! It is very much a thing here and I can only assume that if we wear big hats at the Kentucky Derby that they wear something even more extravagant for Camel racing here 😊. I also learned they have camel fashion shows here: really our version of the Westminster Dog show. Do I hear Best in Show 2?

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