I have a morning flight to Dubai from Singapore and I have mixed emotions. I can’t believe I’m about to head to Dubai on my own for my birthday. I can’t believe I took a dream, and made it real. And, I really can’t believe that it’s happening right now.
When I finally arrive in Dubai, I am overwhelmed by the sheer size of the airport. How flash the cars are on the highay. How many Arabs there are in traditional dress. How much sand there is… everywhere. I head off in search of a local sim card as I try to take in my new surroundings.
After little sleep, I watch the sunrise from my room. The skies here seem bigger somehow. Perhaps, because I’m in a desert and it’s completely flat. My ride picks me up for Toastmasters and I head to the local Toastmasters meeting where I watch and learn how fellow Toastmasters do their thing on the other side of the world. All the while, still trying to come to terms with the fact that I’m actually here!
Back at the hotel, I order Turkish Coffee and a piece of Black Forest Cake. Connecting to wifi, my phone is flooded with birthday wishes. This morning I had a room full of strangers sing me Happy Birthday and now I’m having the fanciest piece of Birthday Cake that I could have dreamed off. Life is grand.
My Hotel is quite far from the city centre, but it offers a free shuttle service to Deira City. From Deira, I can catch the train to the Burj Khalifa but it’s not due til mid afternoon. Which seems like I have an excellent opportunity to check out the pool and steam room.
Feeling refreshed, I head to the Burj for the afternoon. I just need to get through Dubai Mall first!! Wow, that place is huge. I have never seen so many shops in one spot!!
After getting lost a good 47,000 times, I buy ticket to the At The Top experience at the Burj Khalifa which enables me to visit the 148th floor as well as level 125. It’s incredible. I still can’t quite find the words to properly describe my experience there.
Eventually, I head back to the train to catch the shuttle back to my hotel, because I have a Uni assignment due in a few hours. After making friends with a group of Nigerians on the train, I head off to the business centre at the hotel to get my assignment done. Tomorrow I’m heading to Abu Dhabi to see the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. I can’t believe it’s time to move on already. Happy Birthday to me!