Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Sunday 11th - Final Fix of Retail

We are still on IST, waking up at 5 a.m. and hearing the call to prayer somewhere outside. We have our fifth consective meal containing hummus and pitta, then take the Red line Metro for the 35 minute trip to Ibn Battuta, passing the Marina of previous stays on the way. The views from the rear of the train are spectacular, including the Burj Khalifa, and the bill is about 80p each.

As we walk from the Metro to the Ibn Battuta mall we spot a couple of hoopoes, R's totally favourite bird. We won't have chance to visit the flamongos at the bird reserve this time so this sighting is a bit of a bonus.

We start with a coffee and wifi before a leisurely stroll round the Geant supermarket. The range of Indian food available is fabulous and starts to put even Emirates' generous luggage allowance at risk. Chana Daal, dried broad beans, coriander, dhosa mix, nutmeg and DIY gulab jamuns make the cut - the 5kg bag of basmati rice for £7 dips out.

R is still in shopping mode and treats herself to a sea blue spangly kaftan, having decided against an abaya. We will never make real India heads - it is so comforting to see a price on the shelf and to be able to check it at the bar code reader.

After an Iranian wrap lunch (Iranians taste a bit like goat) and a final wander around the air conditioned splendour of the arcades we head back to base. Livingston is missing this retail trick by several miles. Last time we were at Almondvale there wasn't a single palm tree although there was a Debenham's and a Boots' just like in Dubai.

Siesta time was upon us and after that we needed to pack - another good reason for not bringing so much. We had a few dirhams left on our travel cards so we headed up to the creek and took the waterbus again, having a sunset cruise down the water all to ourselves. So kind of the Dubai authorities tio lay this on for us.

We had enjoyed yesterday's lunch so much that we repeated it for supper with the addition of koftas, a sort of kebab shaped like a sausage. For a change we sat indoors but it wasn't as exciting as watching the creek go by. A lesson learned, as was the fact that Turkish coffee is not as nice as mint tea. A stroll through the streets found us a green line metro back to our local station, Al Fahidi. Balance remaining on travel cards nil - a perfect result. Early night tonight as we have a call booked for 4.30 a.m.

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