Wednesday, May 27, 2009


I am trying to come up with a theme for tonights posting and I am a little bit stumped.  I wrack my brain and think and then I realise that perhaps its because I am getting settled into a routine and that I no longer find things unusual or weird...

Have I become acclimatised to life here?  I dont think so, but then I realise how routine things now feel.  The drive to work is now seen as "automatic" rather than a task involving high speed risks.  My work place is now 100% normal in the sense that I am embedded in the routine.  I gave a presentation today for an hour, talking to a bunch of slides on the Masdar City project and it was all seemingly second nature.  I feel comfortable in what I am doing and where I am going and how things get done.  I can now seemingly understand Indians and Pakistanis a bit better as well.  I now answer to "Mr Clayton" rather than my surname because thats the custom here.

I guess my issue with the power company last weekend was annoying rather than freakingly stupid and so now I think that perhaps I am "settled" here.  Interesting thought.

I am however homesick quite often... my emails from friends in Australia make me feel like I am very close and when my mates were doing the emails arranging for a drink on Thursday night at our old regular, I have to say I felt a bit envious and sad that I couldn't go (well I could, but it'd be a bloody expensive beer!).  The homesickness is more than just missing Niki and the girls, its a more high level feeling.  I am still doing my footy tips (and going OK I might add) despite only watching one game on DVD on a 6 week delay and I still read the Australian newspapers online every day.  I read about the budget, the new TV shows (The Chaser starts this week) and in general keep up with "Australi-ana" but it feels different.

I read the local news as well... I am up to speed with the issues here without being passionate about anything.  They're installing red light cameras at intersections and cannot understand why there is a fuss about it?  To me, thats just normal, yet people are "outraged"... it seems that there is media sensationalism in all countries.

So it seems that there is a big middle ground limbo and maybe my odd feelings are not homesickness but perhaps a sense of not feeling that i belong anywhere?  I am not a passionate Emirati... but am distant from Australia.  Weird.

Having said all this though, I am very excited for Niki and the girls to arrive because they will have to go through a whole upheaval of change and I am looking forward to experiencing that as well.  I am looking forward to showing them around, but having said that I have done virtually zero tourist stuff because I havent had the time nor the inclination to do it alone.  I want to explore the beaches here... and walk down along Jumeriah and see what that's like.  People talk about Safa Park as a great picnic area and also its apparently a must to take the Dhow boat across Dubai Creek to the souqs and markets.  All good stuff that I have avoided by choice and by lack of opportunity.

So, maybe I am settling in... but maybe not.  I am sure once Niki and the girls arrive, I will be exposed to a whole lot more of "oddness" in Dubai as we get into the sight seeing bit.

PS - am off to Copenhagen in the morning... have a 8am flight which means getting up at 4am as I have a 5am pickup.  Wont be back until Friday, but will try to post from Denmark....

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