There is not enough variations of this article, and this is my take on it! Because once you have lived in Dubai for over a year, even a few months.. Nothing is ever the same! What did I miss the most? Here we go…
1. No Beaches round the corner!
Being from the Midlands in England, the nearest beach was a few hours drive at LEAST, and to be honest, none of them cut my regular JBR or Jumeirah strip… Having a beach within 20mins distance (Sometimes less) was something I definitely took for granted! In my first year I was at the beach most weeks, If not a beach we went out to the dessert! As time went on the beach became a regular thing and it was a “You don’t even need to ask” Kind of place… But coming back to the UK and not having a beach, even moving up to edinburgh (Surrounded by a few beaches within 30mins distance), nothing compared. But then again, Scotland and beaches? Not a good match! Even the sand is softer and I haven’t been to a UK beach since I was very young (5-10?), but the sand and cleanliness of the Beaches in Dubai.. I guess what I am trying to say is that association of the beach, sun and a the nice warm sea is top of my list I miss!
2. The Call to prayer
A lot of non-muslims will agree with me on this, and it doesn’t have to be on a religious level, but on a spiritual level… This was one of the most beautifulest things about the UAE and the middle east! It was such a soothing and welcoming call. Obviously being a muslim I really appreciated the reminder and hearing it some mornings from my apartment from two different mosques was a little confusing at times, but no sound can compare…
3. I Don’t have a maid!
Now this will probably sound a bit “Brat-like” to people who haven’t lived in the middle east or even South Asia. Having a maid for general house tasks or looking after the kids is a normal thing, you may agree or disagree but it is in no way “Just done by the rich”, it’s the norm. I remember coming back for the first time and to be honest we have always had a helping hand with the cleaning at home, so it was normal back at my parents but as a student when I suggested it, people weren’t as accepting… Or agreeing? Although I do still have help here and there, it’s not quite the same when people think different of you for having a maid or cleaner come in….
This has always been something I loved about Dubai and I tried to bring back with me to the UK, but I just looked silly! Everybody in Dubai always seemed to make that extra effort to look smart, even if it was flip flops with a shirt and shorts or jeans and heels! I have always spent half an hour at my wardrobe/s each morning, even before Dubai, but I feel I made that extra kick in Dubai. Coming back, warmest, comfiest clothes, there’s not as much effort! Everyone seems so casual? Even a dressed up abaya, with some nice heels and a matching bag to the pattern would be a bit MUCH here…. I loved the whole concept of dressing up! To be quite honest, unless it is a formal event, a lot of folk interchange their day wear to evenings or nights out, something I wouldn’t do in Dubai. (Personally kept the evening/night out outfits separate from my day wear)
Being a muslim, having halal food surrounding me in every store, every cafe, every restaurant and brunch was FANTASTIC! I am a huge foodie and the step back down to normality I had to take upon returning to the UK was not pleasant. In fact in my first food shop alone I ordered some meat from Tesco and when it arrived I realised it’s not halal… Not having to read packets for the ingredients or just sticking to veggie options at restaurants was a tough move! There is also nothing like a 10AED Shawarma and fries from a street side cafe!
6. The city is a real 24/7 convenience
Whether I need a chocolate bar and a sandwich, or bottles of water, or my whole weeks groceries, whether its 2AM or 2PM, there was always a supermarket or store that would deliver, heck even McDonalds offered home delivery! When I say the city is always alive, a 24/7 city.. I mean it! The petrol being put in your car as you just sit back, and drive away when it’s in (Obviously having paid!). You could get anything to delivered to your door or car, some street side shops or restaurants will send people out at a honk of your horn…
I learnt SO MUCh about different cultures, countries, languages and people in my time in Dubai… The diversity of people from countries I hadn’t even heard of! Sure there is diversity here in the UK, but nothing quite like the Dubai way.. People flock in from left right and centre, on a night out or a day at the cafe in a mall you could meet people from 10 different countries in the space of an hour and learn something new from each of them!
8. Feeling Safe
I have honestly never felt safer anywhere, travelling around the UAE, I could be out at 3AM on a casual sober walk and not be worried I will get followed or robber or mugged. Since I have come back I have experienced a few upsetting events, and I haven’t even been back long! The police and security do an EXCELLENT job, and to be honest I think the law enforcement and rules are just right, people are scared to commit crimes, but the public aren’t scared to report them? I could probably leave my door open (And I have on many occasions), to go down to the shop, and not be worried of getting robbed or broken into… Something I would never DREAM of doing here in the UK. I don’t have to think twice when I return home alone, at past 10pm on a dark secluded alley… Or if I want to go for a walk at 2AM around a quiet area… or even a busy club area.. Jumeirah Road is alive at its peak at night! People eating, having Tim hortonz, Starbucks, Arabic snacks, or just driving?
9. The location for travel
Dubai is quite a central location, I travelled loads! Around the middle east, Asia, Even came back up to Europe! Its great or place like Thailand, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka.. It is a central hub for them all! A great place for travel bugs to settle!
10. The life drive!
Dubai s full of ambitious people with goals, dreams, and aspirations beyond anything I have seen before. The expo goals of being sustainable, multicultural and inspirational reflect on the society NOW. People are always out and about, networking, meeting, getting things done. The job market may be hard but something will always pop up, theres always something to be done in Dubai! It gives a positive energy of “Make those dreams come true”
Anything you miss about Dubai? Want to share it with us? #MyDxbBlogDubai #DxbBlogDubai #DxbBlogDiaries