We were proud of our valiant meal effort last night. Firstly may I advocate for free alcohol. Whilst in my years of training this has been discouraged as an emotional crutch, there is nothing quite like a free gin fizz cocktail followed by a gin and tonic to make the world easier to deal with. Following this we went to the on site Italian restaurant Casa Mia and ordered a main course each (Matt - pizza (of course), and me - pasta). No starter (but we didn't let them take the bread basket away and we got a 'complementary' bruschetta) and just tap water. We were in and out in 30 minutes much to their bemusement but it only cost us 99 dirhams which is about seventeen pounds which is good believe it or not....and to be fair the portions were decent and it was deliciously yummy.
Well, the news you've all been waiting for is that the washing dried overnight.
By our scale we have had an interesting day as we learned of a free shuttle bus to one of the malls so we went further than the boundary wall of the hotel for a while this morning with the sole intention of buying a book (I knew I should have parted with that twenty-odd quid at Cape Town airport to get me though). The vital news in this regard is that I returned with a Marian Keyes which any woman will tell you is the perfect reality-escape.
The mall was a strange experience for several reasons. Firstly, I haven't seen a united colours of benetton shop for a long time and it reminded me that I still have a blue UCB jumper which I've owned for over 10 years now and sill wear for decorating. Secondly it was just plain odd seeing all the western shops and designers with arabic translation and women covered from head to toe in black looking at patterened clothes. The mall was big, but lacking in atmosphere, a bit soul-less I suppose. The other reason it was strange was because by the time we arrived at the mall I was feeling a bit peculiar. I had the beginnings of a migraine (funny lights infront of eyes etc) but two paracetomol, two neurofen and a bottle of water later I was much better. Not a hangover mum I promise. Matt believes the headache was brought on by the text I received from work which said they would call me at 4.30pm our time today to discuss a report I wrote on one of my clients which is going before a local authority panel tomorrow. Boo hiss.
There were LOTS of lovely clothes that I managed not to buy. I did try on numeous bikinis as I've only got a swimming costume her and had justified the purchase in my head as a bikini will be required for our second honeymoon (yes, indeed the Maldives in August!) but it seems that Dubai women don't have as big boobs as me so I returned with just my book!
We sunbathed and dipped in the pool for a couple of hours. I've never been an advocate of skin damage but I'm actually turning a dirty colour now which has given me a surprisingly healthy glow!
We had our lunch (would it be wrong to be saying I'm getting bored of finger/soldier sandwiches and tea?) and then I returned to the room to await the call from work.....and answered twenty questions and then sent 3 emails trying to write psychobabble on a student with no notes no facts etc, just from memory from the business centre as instructed. I'm sure you'll all find a job for me when the British Psychological Society strike me off for malpractice.
Aparently at work there are 8 of us that haven't made it back in and 20 students absent too...the race is now on for who can get back first. I did get the mobile number of someone who is also supposedly stuck in Dubai but the text hasn't delivered yet.
Meanwhile the latest buzz is that we could be enduring a flight to Spain to be rescued by the navy. I'm sure we should be grateful for this kind offer from the Spanish government but unless the organisation is phenomenally well done, I can see us in a huge backlog to get out of Spain after a 7 hour flight and then having to try and make our way back from whichever British port we end up in so I can't say I'm enthused at the moment. Nice idea but I'm not going to be the first in the queue. There is a new frequently asked questions section on the emirates website but it's still not clear how we will get booked on flights when they do resume.
We've just heard via bbc world that Scotland may reopen tomorrow.....but there's no way of getting to Scotland as the airspace around it is shut. I love a good plan.
We think the hotel are getting a bit itchy about people settling their bills - we've had a very polite note put under our door saying that our spending has been beyond the value they put on the card when they took the original imprint when we checked in (the first time) so they would like to take another - Matt is sorting that now while I type. I don't think it helps that we are now being referred to as Mr and Mrs Coathare by the staff!
So the next event is of course 'happy hour' (think Gin!) and then we will contemplate tonight's food options. This blog feels mightily mundane to me for you guys to be reading but I'm spurred on by its therapeutic effect, time-killing properties and connection with the outside world so with love to you all, I'll sign off for today. x