Monday, September 13, 2010

New chapter - Middle East

I'm sitting at the nail salon on my one week anniversary in Abu Dhabi (6th Sept 2010), and feeling quite smitten. I don't think I've had a mani/pedi since I lived in NYC! Everyone has told me a million times that I'm going to love the life here and I don't doubt them for a second.

I'd count this as my 4th big move (big defined as new state/country with less than 3 friends!) and I must say, it gets easier every time. I've had to manage my first week here to keep from being double booked! Almost all of my good friends in London have a good friend here, but I cannot meet them all in the first few weeks!    The low down from week number one...
Monday - arrived and sat at visa control for 1.5 hrs because no one turned in my visa! Nice.

Tuesday- first official day in the CNN Abu Dhabi office, followed by my first Iftar at the Emirates Palace!! Meeting clients and dining at the palace on night #1, good form :) the night continued with the editorial crew back at the Souk- fun times even without music (thanks to Ramadan).

Wednesday- breakie with Mike, Paul and Souraya. Normal work day two and then off to Dubai!

Thursday- (=Friday in the UAE!) worked at MIS in Dubai, withstood the yelling and crazy Lebanese! Drinks at Zuma. To which I had to direct the taxi driver! Seems they don't know much here...   Thankfully Zuma is in a 'free zone' so they played good music! But cut us off at midnight. So back to the Shangri La...

Friday- nothing! Whoo hoo! Leaving London almost killed me! Today I finally caught up on sleep, upped my vitamin D levels at the pool, then had dinner at the Marina Yacht club, followed by drinks at a Mexican restaurant and then to a shisha bar/restaurant in the Wafi mall. As we arrived Dan informed me of the tricks of the trade if you want to meet an Emirate (which I don't!). Basically you turn on your phones Bluetooth and set your status to 'single brunette' etc. and they'll start chatting you up! Apparently then you can direct them to where you're sitting so the two of you can decide if you're interested in taking it further... I would consider myself quite the world traveler, but sometimes I’m still very naive! I guess I just like to meet boys the old fashion way! Anyway, Dan's friends were great, and I think everyone but me in the UAE is a consultant!

Saturday- again pool time! Then met two more friends of friends before heading to the Atlantis Hotel for dinner with the CNN crew. I must say, the best part of hanging out with the editorial crew is the stories! As you can imagine, a CNN anchor or producer has seen a lot of crazy shiiiatttt!! I Love it!

Sunday-Thurs last week of Ramadan!  - back to Abu Dhabi for work. And home to the lovely Shangri La. I went out for drinks at hotel bars a few nights, worked out and watched Entourage the others! After a half day of work on Thursday we headed back to Dubai for the long weekend, thanks to the Eid holiday!!

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