Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Sun Set


Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, Park Hyatt Sunset

The sun has set on a relaxing spring break holiday.  We planned to travel abroad last week, but we are so glad we changed our minds at the last minute.

Seeing my husband log more miles than a pilot over the last month, and the need for all of us to get some downtime led me to this suggestion.  Not only did we enjoy a relaxing holiday, but it really reminded us of the beauty that can be found the UAE.

We started on the Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi.  I have posted about this place before, but I never get tired of its crystal clear, blue water.  The water there rivals that of the Maldives.

After a few days we moved to the Eastern Mangroves of Abu Dhabi where we spent one sunrise kayaking through this protected area.  I did not bring my camera.  It was nice to just be a part of nature rather than observing it through a lens.  Once the weather cools down again I will definitely will go back with my camera.

We returned to Dubai and concluded our time off with a trip to Wild Wadi, the oldest of the big water parks in the UAE.  Much to my surprise, Erin is now tall enough to ride the big slides.  He loves it and I see he is a complete thrill seeker.

Tomorrow, instead of watching sunsets, I will see the sun rise as I get up to start the rush to school and work.  I like the sun rise, but it's the madness that follows that will have me wishing I were still in Abu Dhabi enjoying one of these scenes.

Abu Dhabi sunset over the Eastern Mangroves

Abu Dhabi sunset over the Eastern Mangroves

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Abu Dhabi Mangroves

Instead of traveling this spring break, we opted for a much needed holiday closer to home in Abu Dhabi.

While many people think there is nothing but desert here, there are also amazing forests of mangroves just a few minutes from the city.  Tomorrow morning we will venture out on a kayak tour. I have always wanted to do this, but then….

Tonight after I took this picture, I saw something swimming across the water.  Home to a lot of wildlife such as foxes, birds and fish, I didn't think of snakes until I was alone in the dark.  This thing was probably a turtle, but it was there I recalled my childhood days of seeing snakes swim across water.  

I immediately did some research about the mangroves, and all seems much safer than the water snakes I know from Texas.  Regardless, praying for some really cute turtles tomorrow.


Abu Dhabi's Eastern Mangroves at night


Thursday, April 10, 2014

School Buses - You really do need to stop for them



Cars are the latest Social "gadgets" on the market.  Some makers have already started, and I am sure it is not long before we can access Facebook in all cars.  Maybe I am old-fashioned, but do we really need this?

I have a device in my car that can access Facebook.  It is called a phone.  I don't catch up on social media while I am driving, nor do I need to.  If I have to sit at a red-light too long, I may start looking. I put the device down when I start driving again.

I can't help but wonder if this is how people felt when radio was put in cars… assuming there was a time when cars were without radio.

One safety challenge here I will never understand is the failure of people - so far every driver I have seen here - to stop behind a school bus when a child is obviously getting off.   This is a big yellow bus with flashing lights and a stop sign.

Children are exiting the bus, and it is usually curb-side, but it is still drives me mad that people fly past in their cars.

I stop.  People behind me honk.  They proceed to go around me and the bus.  I shake my head.

From his car seat, my six year old asks why this is not safe.  I explain to him that a child could get hit by a car.  I feel incredibly sad that anyone would be in such a hurry to jeopardize a child getting off a school bus.  I hate when the cold reality of carelessness chips away at his innocence as he comes to realize these things.

I wonder how he perceives it.  Why would an adult not stop for a child? He is at the age where he still believes most adults are kind and good.  Does it sadden him a bit to know people do not care.

As a young diabetic, he does not ride the bus yet.  Someday he might.  This issue will only add to my hesitation to let him ride the bus too soon.

Articles I have read state it is punishable with a fine.  I'm not sure how many are fined.   I just really hope more people will stop.

Please stop for buses.. and pedestrians too while we're at it.

Rant over.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

More from the Dubai Light Festival

Here are a few more images from the Dubai Light Festival last week.  

We had a good rain the day before I went out.  While the desert can be dusty, we seem to have the clearest puddles.  Although they would be a nuisance, I wish they would stay around a little longer than one day.


Dubai Festival of Lights

Dubai Festival of Lights

Palace Hotel, Dubai Festival of Lights

Friday, March 28, 2014

The Dubai Festival of Lights

Dubai Festival of Lights


Dubai Festival of Lights
Today concludes the Dubai Festival of Lights.  Downtown Dubai, which is pretty well lit already, had an exhibit of various light installations for nine days.

If you missed it, and you are not going to the World Cup Tomorrow, or the Cavalia show, or Lord of the Dance, or one of the many other activities crammed into the good weather months here, you can enjoy Earth Hour festivities in the same area tomorrow evening at 8:30pm.


Dubai Festival of Lights