Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Midnight at the oasis, send your camel to bed (Maria Muldaur)

Rambling Man (You may say I'm a dreamer - Chapter 10 part 11)

The northern Purdy clan gathers at Christine's
for Irene's 90 not out party!

Life in the Al Ain years was good. Really good! Work (as detailed in the previous post was great) but the lifestyle for me and Jacky was terrific as well.

Jacky and her ex pat wife friends used the malls as gathering places. And then they shopped! Suffice to say we brought a lot of stuff home to NZ afterwards - cushions, bedding, shoes, clothes, art work, CDs, stereos, TVs , and so on - A LOT of stuff!

Along the way we had frequent overseas trips: back to NZ and Waiheke Island; to the UK to see Christine, Irene and the rest of the Purdy clan; and memorably the Christmas 2011 trip to London for the most wonderful and gayest Christmas celebration of all time with Patrick/ Randy and their friends.

Wozza and Jade at the
Sheikh Zayed Mosque
Meanwhile back in the UAE, we moved from The Gardens apartments to Yellow Jimi - another enclave of ex pat Cognition workers (think Melrose Place) - we were neighbours of Graeme and Jansy, Pete and Paula, Brett and Margie and Gavin and Noella on the top floor. They were all awesome kiwi friends.

Our downtimes were spent walking (often to the Al Jimi mall), with weekend road trips to Dubai and the Dubai Mall (OMG - I LOVE the Dubai Mall), Mall of the Emirates (playing at Ski Dubai with Jade), Burjuman Centre. We also did frequent road trips to Abu Dhabi (great music store there - Kings Recording), with the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque a constant highlight. We went on tours of Dubai (with visitors like Brian Smith and Jade), Jacky went for frequent riding sessions at the Al Ain equestrian centre (while I walked for an hour around the complex). Camel rides in the desert and visits to Al Ain zoo were great too.

A lot of dates were consumed!
Life in the sandpit  was a full on experience! 

I loved it - the consistently great weather, the people, the sand dunes, the coffee treats in the malls, the shopping, the cheap petrol!

Shame it had to end but the unreal bubble life does have a use by date. By the end, Jacky had had enough extended holiday (she hadn't worked for three years) and it was time for another change. We'd bought a house in Hawke's Bay and I was confident I'd pick up some kind of teaching job - management or just English teaching would have been fine.

With my usual naive spirit of optimism I returned to NZ  in June 2012 (Jacky had left in January to work through possession of the house - Red Phoenix Farm).

The hope was the rambling years were at an end, some stability and security was the thinking. But more post is needed before that would happen!

Love and peace - Wozza

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