Upon pulling up to the public beach we discovered that it was not nearly so busy. We chose our nice little piece of sand; figured out the towel arrangements - Sarah and Lee were going to share one allowing us to share the other and realized that with a whole lake before us, the bathroom facilities would take care of themselves. After settling in to a nice tanning spot and cooling off in the water, the action began. Now in case we haven't mentioned it - Eid means that everyone must have those three days off - this includes all the little manual laborers that are brought in on two year contracts and work 80 hours a week every other week. That being said - they were out in full force every where we went.
While we are in the water, a group of men gather and quickly strip down to their tighty whiteys and plunge into the cool waters themselves. And let me just say - this was no eye candy. Some things are better left covered and those tighty whiteys were it. Giggling away like school girls they swim and splash about. At this point we have retreated to the towels partly to catch some rays and partly due to being grossed out that the men are swimming in their underwear. The group then decides to climb onto this boat which is docked nearby and do belly flops off the boat. Pretty impressive air on some of those - I am sure their stomachs were sore the next day. In the meantime another group forms with men not quite so brave who have tied what looked like dish towels around themselves so their tighty whiteys weren't flapping in the breeze. The skirted men are lying in 2 feet of water pretending to swim for the camera on shore. Then another guy comes from nowhere and his buddies are calling him to join them in the lake. Well he tried to be polite and wrap his skirt around while undressing but his buddies egged him on to strip on down and run in!! Whew- tighty whiteys in a lovely shade of blue is what greeted our eyes!! As we are all laughing thinking it doesn't get any better than this - the accomplished shallow water swimmer emerges from the lake and begins to pose on his Peaugot as though he is a supermodel on a fabulous sports car while his friend is still snapping away!! The boys in the water are again flitting about attempting to climb into the boat for another belly flop competition when the owner of the boat races in in his Land Rover honking his horn and yelling at them to get off his boat. What a site!! By this point it was time for us to pack up and head out but one can only wonder what the men were up to next . . . !!!! Too bad we didn't catch it all on camera - all you single girls could have had your pick!!!
After leaving the beach we were desperately in need of some lunch and water - what better spot to hit up then Sarah and Lee's favorite litlle McDonald's. Who would have known the delectable dishes the menu would hold. Sarah and Lee had told us that the McArabia is a winner so we had to find out for ourselves!
On the way back to the hotel for showers and a change of clothes we hit up one of the Sou's to see what bargains we could find. Not much apparently but it was still fun to look around and see all the wares they had to offer. We stopped for a drink on a little patio with a fabulous view and then were off again.
The plan for the evening was to hit up the old souks, have some dinner and a river cruise and go to one of the fancier hotel's little club for drinks. As girls this meant we had two options - dress for the first part of the evening or the latter. . . and because we are so cute we went for the latter. So off we stride to the souks in our sundresses looking hot. Now Dubai isn't nearly as conservative as Doha and so all three of us girls didn't think our outfits would draw any attention. But again due to blessed Eid the old souks were packed. Picture a long narrow alley with stores lining both sides and the walk way being wall to wall people in which 95% were construction men or arabs 4.999% were caucasian men and the final .001% were women - yes that meant us three girls, an elderly woman and her even more elderly mother and the odd arab woman. From the beginning of the alley to the end we had received many "bumps" stares from every single man and had one stalker that Lee finally had to stare down. The three of us have never been so glad to arrive at a restaurant in our lives, I am sure.
We spend a couple hours having some fabulous lebanese appetizers and finishing off with some sheesha and then were whisked away on our river cruise. By the time that was done, the souks had cleared out a lot and our trek back to the vehicle was relatively quiet and pleasant.
Here are a couple of good pics from the restaurant, old souk area and river cruise.
Sarah and Lee
Again, thanks to Eid we weren't able to get into the original place we tried but the second spot - the Mirage had a beautiful little roof top patio that was lit up really neat. We got there just in time for them to take last call so we only stayed for about an hour but it was the perfect end to another fun day.