Posted by: Jean-Paul Behrens | October 12, 2009

Abu Dhabi Adventures

Last week I headed over to Abu Dhabi in a mission to register with my Venezuelan embassy. Yes, it cannot be done by phone, mail, email, or any other useful channel to communicate through. Just in person. So I decided to make what should have been a tedious visit a small adventure.

The ride over there was fast enough, especially since I was sitting with a friend of mine, Marc. He’s half Filipino, half French, was born in Abu Dhabi, and speaks with an British accent – go figure. Anyways, with him the 2 hour ride became a discussion on world affairs that led to what seemed to be the perfect solution to the globe’s problems. Sadly enough, we can’t remember what it is we proposed! But the curious thing is that I always seem to end up talking about these things in Dubai, so there will be another chance. I guess here people are more global sensitive? (term gotten from a UT class haha go COM 401!!)

Moving on… Abu Dhabi was a real experience. There’s an obvious separation from Abu Dhabi (AD)and Dubai you can notice in the middle of the road on your way to AD. As soon as you start seeing trees, green areas, light posts, and an actual sidewalk, you are in the Abu Dhabi emirate. Dubai is definitely not pedestrian friendly, unlike AD. There are many places to visit, perhaps the most popular the Great Mosque of Abu Dhabi, seen on the right. MASSIVE structure. I spent around 3 hours taking pictures of it and I still want to go back. It is so big that I thought it was the second largest mosque in the world, right after the Sacred Mosque in Mecca. Turns out I was completely off. A quick Wikipedia search put things into perspective.

There was also a big structure called Emirates Palace, which I think is a hotel?? Not sure but guards didn’t let us in because of busy week :s Maybe next time!

I took some pictures of the streets and some other weird buildings (ex: a disc shaped hotel…). I’ll put them up in my next post when I finish passing them to my computer and editing. All in all, AD is a great city. Many people in Dubai, especially the part where I live near Media City and the Marina, complain about the lack of “cityness” this place has. It feels like living in The Sims or something. I like it, but you do feel like something is missing. However, I have yet to visit downtown Dubai where the real action takes place. So my I guess I cannot say a real opinion about Dubai until then.

PS: Tampa rocks =)

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