We welcomed the hot, dry weather back in Dubai and relished the fact that everything was so neat, clean and orderly after India. It was only the prices in Dubai that were hard to digest after most things being so much cheaper in India. We always catch the train from the airport to FGB (First Gulf Bank)which is fast and an easy way to get to that side of town and we then get a taxi to Um Suquiem 2 where Alan lives. Mary his housekeeper let us in as Alan had to fly to Munich that day. He was luckily home two days later and until we left.

We noticed at the mall that there were a lot more Russian sales assistants, some very rude and a couple of very nice ones making up for the rude ones. There were also many Russian tourists in Dubai this time. We found on the whole that the Filipino and Indian staff are much more pleasant.

It is always relaxing going to stay with Alan in Dubai. We have been there now many times and we feel very much at home and enjoy just spending time with him and walking to the beach, having a swim in the crystal clear water and visiting the Mall of the Emirates a couple of times. We had take away Indian and Arabian food so that we could also have a drink at home. No alcohol is served in any of the restaurants only in the big hotels.

We were lucky this time to catch up with Salim, my friend from our Mandarin course in Hangzhou nearly five years ago. We hadn’t seen him for a couple of years and he had flown in from a holiday with his family in Istanbul the day before.

Alan kindly dropped us at the airport with our large amount of luggage on the 9th May for our Qatar flight via Doha to Rome.

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