Dubai-Parking for SUVs and Luxury Liners

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In the background that tall building is actually a cruise ship parked in old Dubai harbor while the tourists head for the Gold Souk and Bur Dubai for shopping and sight seeing.

Old Dubai is really quaint, enchanting and charming in its own way. A lot of construction is going on to modernise roads and bridges and create flyovers. This really is a city planning for the future!

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Chevas/J Walker vs Old Monk Rum

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I am a Chevas Regal fan( Ahem, only when I can’t get my Indian rum; the attendant at the duty free shop was horrified at the thought of displaying such a monstrosity as Old Monk Rum) ( On the other hand the grapevine on Whatsapp had revealed that they had just unearthed a factory making spurious Chevas Regal and Johnnie Walker Black Label back in New Delhi, India) and we find an offer of one free one litre bottle with three litre bottles of Chivas. At least the quality of my booze is guaranteed here. My Whatsapp has started working with the free Dubai airport wifi and so I ask my daughter  if she approves of the deal and she tells me to jump with alacrity at this great offer. I also buy some white wine. Every person is allowed to buy five litres of liquor at the duty free well equipped shop. Liquor inside Dubai is not served in restaurants except those attached to five star hotels. It is a trick to learn to catch the happy hours of five stars in Dubai. Women are offered two to three free drinks on Tuesdays and on Mondays in some hotels. Well that smells a bit of female chauvinism. Fridays and Saturdays have noon to five great lunch offers with drinks. So grab that copy of DBX and ShortList and learn about all the hotspots of town.

I have seen airports but this is tremendous. The scale of things here is amazing. Dubai is Utopia in the desert; an engineering feat to be marvelled at. It is a remote corner of the world which has become a great tourist hub. Really watching the lunar landscape of the peninsula from the plane one wonders at this magnificent growth of man’s achievements in the desert. Dubai is a sporting hub too (remember the Federer vs Agassi match on the tennis court on the platform of the Burj al Arab?). In fact the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament will be ongoing during our visit. The Federer vs Agassi event was a promotion for this tennis tournament 13 years ago.  The airport itself is a wonder connected by a fast metro to our baggage drop point. It is gigantic in size, the airport. Salman Khan smiles back at me from a hoarding for a local brand. I quickly grab a free copy of the first copy of DBX. Maybe this will be worth a million dollars in a hundred years like the Dubai Airport Duty Free raffle.

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I have seen airports but this is tremendous. The scale of things here is amazing. Dubai is Utopia in the desert; an engineering feat to be marvelled at. It is a remote corner of the world which has become a great tourist hub. Really watching the lunar landscape of the peninsula from the plane one wonders at this magnificent growth of man’s achievements in the desert. Dubai is a sporting hub too (remember the Federer vs Agassi match on the tennis court on the platform of the Burj al Arab?). In fact the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament will be ongoing during our visit. The Federer vs Agassi event was a promotion for this tennis tournament 13 years ago.  The airport itself is a wonder connected by a fast metro to our baggage drop point. It is gigantic in size, the airport. Salman Khan smiles back at me from a hoarding for a local brand. I quickly grab a free copy of the first copy of DBX. Maybe this will be worth a million dollars in a hundred years like the Dubai Airport Duty Free raffle.

Gucci and Jimmy Choo

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The first thing to trouble me was my requirement for medicines in my daily life. I am a sick man, a hidden one, I have not come out ot the closet with my sickness. I am asthmatic, I have high blood pressure and have numerous other old man’s niggling ailments which I cure with a plethora of allopathic, homeopathic and ayurvedic panaceas. I also use a nebulizer now and it has become necessary since the maids have unfortunately passed on the desperate colds and flus they had. It is mortally dangerous for me these colds and I have decided to take flu shots (which I denounced earlier) in future to fight these invaders of the nasal and bronchial passages.

I am a bit afraid of taking these medicines to Dubai. I might be arrested for smuggling drugs. I meet my doctors again and get the necessary prescriptions and then go on a medicine buying spree. You will be glad to know that the baggage allowed on airlines to Dubai is 30Kg checked in  and 7 Kg cabin baggage. So half of my big suitcase is full of medicines and the heavy nebulizer.

To cut a long story short, we arrive at the amazing Dubai airport and no one gives a damn for what I am carrying. This truly is a free country only if you obey all the laws. Women from various countries are roaming around in skimpy dresses while arab women cluster in their black flowing garbs(but in Jimmy Choo shoes and Gucci bags) watching this mela of life passing before their eyes.IMG_8751IMG_8753IMG_8754

Dubai, Here I Come!

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A month in Dubai at the invitation of my daughter who has taken an extra roomed apartment to accommodate visitors from India. A week from now we (my wife is invited too) we will be in what looks like the Los Angeles of the Middle East from photos sent by my youngest daughter Liaga. My main worry right now is the medical paraphernalia I will have to take along as a senior citizen. There is my nebulizer and then my blood pressure measuring electronic meter. Perhaps a kilo of medicines will accompany me with proper prescriptions and bills from the pharmacy. Should I take my old fashioned camera? Should I get a wheel fixed on my suitcase or carry on using it as I have with only three wheels as one was broken off by an airline baggage handler. How many shirts should I carry? How many inhalers should I carry?

I have learned from the net that the Sheikh is a world figure who loves horse racing and is a regular visitor and contender at Royal Ascot. People say Dubai is in a downwards tailspin because of the drop in oil prices and demand and the self sufficiency of the US. I am waiting for my eyes to be opened in a positive way.