It’s been 4 years since I was last in Dubai, I still remember the day that I took my final flight out of the city with no return date. Since then, I haven’t been back and to be absolutely and completely honest – I’ve avoided going back. I’m not saying that I’ve had a horrible time in Dubai in fact, it was the best 7 years of my life. If I am to relive my life, I’d do it all over again – it is where I met The Greek Mister after all.
I can now see Dubai from a different perspective – a tourist, not a resident. It’s just like any other cities in the world, it is not perfect. Racism is evident but let’s be honest, can you actually tell me a place which isn’t? At least you don’t get physically attacked nor hurt because of the color of your skin but sure, equal opportunity within the workplace doesn’t exist. It’s not only in the workplace, it’s everywhere in Dubai – stereotyping is common and not discreet.
Case in point, as soon as I arrived at the airport – I was stopped when I went directly to the Fast Track Access at the Immigration area. I was told that it’s only for business class passengers. When I’ve told the airport staff that I’m a business class passenger, he asked me for the Fast Track card that you normally get if you are traveling on business class. All the while, Western passengers were walking past us without being stopped. I guess Filipinos in general can’t afford a business class ticket in their eyes (which actually is true in my case because I got a free upgrade on the flight but that’s not the point. :p). The situation made me upset but then my mind switched itself back to the mentality that I was in when I was living in Dubai “if you don’t like it, leave”.
Dubai isn’t forcing anyone to visit it nor to live there, I had a choice during those 7 years to leave the city but I chose not to so I’ve turned a blind eye to the obvious racism happening around me and just reminded myself that at least I’m not getting physically attacked because of the color of my skin like what’s happening in some other cities in the world. That mentality got me through most of my days in Dubai and actually made me enjoy living in the city itself. There is no perfect place in the world and you always have to look past the imperfections if you don’t intend to be miserable all your life.
Driving through Sheikh Zayed Road from the airport, I felt like I’ve never left the city. It looks different and yet, it feels familiar. A lot of things have changed in the four years that I was gone but then surprisingly, it actually feels like home for some weird reasons. I guess it’s hard to take the familiarity away specially if you’re reminded of many great memories as you pass through the places you’ve spent your days in.
I stayed at the One and Only Royal Mirage The Palace which is an absolute gem. A true five star property with a seven star service, I already knew that the resort itself is going to be luxurious but what made such a difference in my stay was the customer service I’ve received from each and every single staff in the resort. I’m not a huge fan of exaggeration but I guess in this case I can and I will because there is no other way of putting this – my heart was literally bursting with happiness because the staff at the resort treated me like a queen. Nothing is too much for them and they’d do everything in their power to make your stay as memorable and as perfect as they can. They didn’t fail as it’s one of the best (albeit the shortest) holiday I’ve ever had for such a long time.
I’ve met a lot of my friends during my very short holiday in Dubai, friends who became my family for the 7 years that I was there. It was only then that I realized how much I have missed Dubai because it’s where I met all these wonderful people who’ve all become a part of my life. It’s been an absolute pleasure catching up with all of them and once again, it felt to me like I’ve never left the city.
This trip made me realize how much I’ve missed Dubai and didn’t even know it. I think more than the city itself (because I didn’t really do any sightseeing while there) it’s the people who’ve all been a part of my life who I miss the most. Somehow, going back to Dubai for a visit doesn’t sound like something I’d avoid doing anymore – I’d definitely avoid it during the summer period though if I’m being honest. 😉
Note: Photos in this post are of the One and Only Royal Mirage The Palace, highly recommended resort if you ever find yourself in Dubai. 🙂
On a different note, a lot of people have been asking me what camera I use for photos and videos and you’ll all be surprised that it’s just a camera phone. I am using Huawei’s Mate 10 Pro which is amazing! Camera’s wonderful, the memory’s huge and the battery lasts the whole day even if it’s being used constantly. Here’s a link where you can buy this phone from: Huawei Mate 10 Pro (Single-SIM) 128GB BLA-L09 SIM-Free 4G Smartphone (Titanium Grey). Just to remind you, if you do buy it from this link I’ll get a small commission from it at no extra charge to you. Thank you in advance if you do decide to buy it from my link. 🙂