Wow. A full week here in Abu Dhabi … And it’s flown by!
We’ve been kept pretty busy with orientation days, a medical and application for the Emirates ID card. All of us received our furniture allowance which meant lots of window shopping, then the reality kicked in for those in the group who will be living in Abu Dhabi city as they got their apartment allocations yesterday – and are getting serious with the furniture buying as they only have 5 days in the hotel from the moment they sign the lease!
I am being transferred to Al Ain tomorrow (Saturday) and will be put up in the Hilton there until our apartments are ready – hopefully Sunday – then our 5 day countdown can begin too!
Super excited about going to the Hilton in Al Ain … check out the pool!
I’ve ordered and paid for a custom super king bed 200 x 210- no more feet hanging off the end for me! – and have a plan for getting the appliances and the rest of the furniture once I see the apartment and figure out what I can actually fit in it. We are allowed to paint and decorate any way we like so the next couple of weeks until school starts on the 21st August will be mostly taken up with that.
For now though, it’s Friday (my new Saturday) and I’m going to finish this coffee and go for a swim. A little more window shopping can happen later.
Things I’ve learned:
- The people here – all of them, regardless of where they are from – are fantastic
- Turkey Bacon is an adequate substitute, but it will never replace the real thing for me
- Chicken sausages, however, are lovely and I may never eat pork ones again
- Driving on the right will take getting used to once I get behind the wheel but will be fine so long as I never have to turn left or right
- The roads are long, and dead straight (see above)
- Roundabouts will take concentration
- Having a swimming pool is bliss
- There is hot, then there is hot .. Dis kak varm!
- Afrikaans is a brilliant way for expressing how hot it is
- Humidity makes even my hair curly
- There is breathtaking beauty here, that has brought me to tears .. More than once
- The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque … stunning (see above)
- Customer service is phenomenal – I phoned a store yesterday to enquire about a mirror I’d seen. Within 5 mins the assistant had whatsapp’d pictures of every mirror in the place, with separate pics of the price tags and details about their current sale
- Stores will send a driver if you ask – free of charge – and return you back to your accommodation if you require … Bed shops, furniture shops, even IKEA sent a bus for us
Abu Dhabi, you have surprised and amazed, and I can’t wait to discover more.