Our sleeping hours are still very much on SA time it seems. Everyone seemed to go to sleep late and so at 10am I woke up the kids so we could get to breakfast before it closed. I had suggested we try the other breakfast venue this morning on the Lower Ground – boy did I pay for that mistake for the rest of day. Firstly it took us about 5 minutes to get a lift down and then when we got down there was a queue for a table. So we got back into a lift again to go back up to the 35th floor except that particular lift only went as far as the 33rd floor. The balance of the day for me was spent fielding off verbal jabs about breakfast.
We decided to try out the gulf sea today and so went down to the beach in front of the hotel. The section is only for the hotel guests and has umbrella’s and sun loungers and a full bar service. My desire for a beer could finally be fulfilled. Only problem was after ordering it I was bankrupted because it cost AED45 (R140, $13). Probably the most expensive beer I have ever drunk. Helen, Stephen and Michael swam, Chloe and I paddled. We then spent the rest of the morning and the first few hours of the afternoon reading or sleeping on the sun loungers. A nice relaxing few hours.
We went down the Walk and had a late lunch at about 3pm. We then continued on the Walk down the beach. As it is Friday which is the first day of the weekend here, the Walk and beach area was packed with people and very festive. It has a rubberized running track and various pieces of exercise equipment as well. It was also an opportunity to spot all the expensive cars in Dubai. There is not an old car to be seen and the majority of cars are what we would call luxury cars. Clearly no shortage of cash. Just in our time out over lunch we saw a Rolls Royce (actually 2 – one in gold of course), Ferrari’s, Porsche, Corvette and numerous others. They seem to love any type of black Mercedes (they clearly only come in one colour here in Dubai) and the other very popular car is are Toyota Landcruisers (definitely the 4×4 of choice). Made us feel right at home.
After the high paced day everyone want to relax for a little in the hotel room and we caught up with non-stop coverage of the terrorist attacks in Paris by watching Sky News and CNN and comparing their reporting styles. We also watched our first ever Camel race on TV (with Arabic commentary). The camels are mounted with a radio controlled jockey. The owners drive next o the camels and control the jockey from their 4x4s. So you have a picture of the camels racing with about 25 4x4s riding next to the track. I hope the photo of the TV screen does it justice!
We had planned to go to the Gold Souk this evening and then to see the fountains at the Burj Khalifa but our energy had waned and so we decided to rather walk to the Dubai Marina and have dinner there and walk around the Mall. It is about 1km from our hotel and quite a pleasant walk over the Dubai Creek with some spectacular night views of the skyline. Dinner at an Italian restaurant means we have now covered cuisine from 4 different countries in 2 days.
I was roundly criticized this morning for not signing off the blog last night so I am not going to make that mistake again.
P (no one else is listed because they all spent the day mocking me!)