Dubai is my city.
I have appropriated it as my own. My Dubai. This blog is about Dubai. About its vibrancy, its energy, its opportunities and its offerings.
From the glitzy neighborhood of Burj Khalifa, to the urban Sheikh Zayed Road, to the golf greens of the Creek Club or the Emirates Club, from the authentic Oud Metha to the suburban UmSuqeim, to the royal Zabeel, to the popular Satwa, my pink taxi drives. All the while, I observe, I marvel, I notice, I feel the pulse of my city.
This week, from Christmas eve to New Year's day, Dubai has slowed down, gradually, almost unnoticed, but I have measured the slower pace, from the volume of traffic at any given time and also from its accompanying vibe. Dubai is usually spinning at a speed I fear to handle after the "breather" week we have experienced over the Western holidays.
I loved the UAE National day festivities, because it also heralded a time of respite, albeit a very jubilant one. During our two Eids, we also enjoy a fabulous tranquility. This slow-down doesn't resemble the depressing Sunday shut downs in Swiss cities, nor does it have equivalent with the rather somber atmosphere of Thanksgiving or Christmas day in the United States when ALL activities cease.
In Dubai, activity never stops: even on slow-down, cars swirl around clover shaped interchanges, malls overflow, airplanes land at the wee times of the night, supermarkets are open 24/7, golf courses are lit till 10pm, and concerts and events attract party goers.
This New Year is just an example. Splendid fireworks burst in multiple venues, showcasing our landmarks. The metro which habitually closes early had extra trains transporting partygoers at 3 am in the morning. My brother's Zabeel/DIFC neighborhood was squatted by revelers celebrating loud.
Tomorrow, Monday January 2nd, 2012, reality bites. The Dubai work ethics will kickstart again. People will wake up with professional worries on their minds. The hustle bustle will resurface. The traffic will be more aggressive again
And I will be sure to feel it.