1) Crossing through the Sharjah boarder costs only 10 OMR as opposed to the 20 OMR that the Dubai boarder charges. But, it’s not worth it because the total journey then takes close to 6 hours and your butt gets numb and your eyes begin to play tricks on you (especially if you drive after work at night).
2) Pizza can be delivered to your place at 1am and it will actually be hot and taste good! No one will get your order wrong, the delivery dude will not be rude to you and they will include all the toppings and not just those that they randomly selected from the counter.
3) UAE has beautiful people. In hot pants, with monkeys, with baby strollers, on rollerblades, with burgers, in abayas, with Chanel bags, with Chihuahuas or in kinky red shorts. UAE people are gorgeous. A colleague recently referred to it as “a candy store” and yes I know this is very sexist, but it is such a perfect description!
4) Crowds of people are not out there to get me. On the third day I was finally slipping into a mild acceptance of the fact that not everyone is a sexual predator/rapist/stalker (I get that feeling a lot in Oman). Crowds are good. Crowds are fun. Crowds don’t give a crap if you don’t have make up on, if you are standing under the rain and enjoying it, if your husband is feeding you sushi in the middle of the street or if you yell “OMG PEOPLE!” and point at the crowd. Crowd’s don’t give a flying…in the UAE you are average. You are part of the crown and no longer a piece of hot *** that the freaks will drool over.
5) Food tastes insatiably good on the other side of the boarder. I feel like I was under anesthesia up until I arrived to Dubai and had their pizza, burgers, tacos, sushi, noodle soup, Chinese food (Yes, we ate A LOT in Dubai). I could not get enough of the flavors, the variety, the spices and the availability of the palette. I discovered taste buds I never knew I had or perhaps they were dormant up until they were roused by 800 Pizza (cheese, ham, turkey bacon and meat on top of meat).
6) It is possible to spend 9 hours in a mall and you still wouldn’t see it all. Although I am not in particular a shopaholic I felt obliged to visit the BIGGEST MALL IN THE WORLD. It just also happens to have the biggest indoor waterfall and a fantastic aquarium complete with sting rays and sharks. Oh the thrill. Turns out that meeting a 80kg shark nose to nose is not as scary as National Geographic makes it seem.
7) Taxi drivers are not maniacs and can actually be responsible on the road. They will also find your building in the nick of time and use A METER to charge your journey. Seriously! It’s magical. How many of us got into a taxi in Oman having negotiated a price only to get out and pay double because the driver “ bad English no understand two rial”.
8) Their road radars are meanies. It’s not like Oman when you drive on the highway at 140 and think “is this thing on?” oh no. Their super radars are trained to hit your windshield like lightning as soon as you crawl over the 80 m/h limit on the fly over.
9) People go for walks. With their dogs. With their monkeys (I swear!). With their girlfriends. With babies. People just stroll around like no man’s business. I have blisters from all the walking. I hated walking with a passion by Saturday. No gym work out could ever measure up to the calories we burned by walking from our parked car to what seemed like another freaking country.
10) The UAE is going through a rapid baby boom. Or maybe my eyes were playing tricks on me. There are babies of every age, shape and size on every corner of every street and in every shop of every mall in Dubai. There are even twins. I counted 5 sets of twins in the Emirates mall. Between 11 and 5 pm we encountered particularly cute well behaved cherubs that make me have butterflies in my tummy, but towards the evening every toddler we went past was screaming and kicking so the butterflies went away again. Are we missing a trend here in Oman?
I think we are missing about 100 trends here in Oman…and whilst I enjoy our blissful simple existence here, I cannot help but feel bummed to be back