Monday, April 14, 2008

Abu Dhabi Red Bull Air Race

I first want to apologize for not posting in so many days (and for those who look for me, for not being online). We have been very busy “adventuring” in our little overseas home.

We all went to the Red Bull Air Race on the Corniche. They race these small planes through a course over the water that includes these large inflatable pylons that the pilots must fly through. They get disqualified if they fly too high, above the pylons, and also if they fly too low and close to the water. They get within 1.3 meters (!!!) of the water, going a couple hundred miles per hour. Needless to say it is a fascinating sport to watch. Especially as close as we were to the action. We took over 500 pictures total of the event. Obviously I can’t post that many, and most of them were basically duplicates, but it is cool to have so many. I will post many fewer than that! Haha, but enough that will give you a taste of what we saw…

Kaden was a very good boy while we were there. He had 50 spf sunblock, so he was good to go. Stu and I on the other hand got pretty sunburned. I wore my really cool HUGE shades, so my tan lines are so dorky! My nose and forehead look like Rudolph but the bridge of my nose and my raccoon eyes are still just as I-live-in-Idaho bright white as they were!

On Friday night we went to the Lebanese Flower (again, YUMMY!) with Josh and Tommy. About 15 minutes into the meal, Josh needed salt and Stu asked the woman who was sitting next to us if we could borrow theirs. This prompted a very long conversation which led to me trading phone numbers with both women with promises to get together! The women were Lebanese (enjoying the restaurant since they miss home, sighhhh). They are nurses at the Corniche Hospital here and I got to chat with the one woman, Hallah, about being Muslim, why they cover their heads, why women don’t go to the Mosque, etc. For about an hour and a half a talked about everything under the sun with this woman. It was such a great experience. She wants me to come over so she can “make Lebanese bread fresh” for me, and she even said she’d teach me Arabic. I am hoping to get together with these two sometime soon. What an opportunity. It is funny how universal misconceptions about people are. Hallah told me that when she first saw us sit down she thought we were British. When she found out we were American she got so excited and asked if we could “make friends” since she wants to have an American friend so bad. Her sister lives in Michigan and works as a nurse and she is taking her exams in Jordan this June to hopefully get accepted to work as a nurse in Queens, New York. (Not my dream, but good for her!)

She asked just as many questions of me as I did her though. She must have asked me 5 times if it was ok for me to go out without my husband. (In their religion, single women are not allowed to go out alone without a member of their family present.) She kept asking questions about what it was like to live in America and about fast food! Lol. The friend, Meirella, informed me that “Americans are fat because they eat too much fast food.” But it was so mice to sit and talk with them for so long. Even through the slight language barrier, I felt a better connection with them in such a short period of time than I have with anyone else since we’ve been here. Stu said it is because I need “a Kristin” here. I miss being around someone who is so excited about life and infectious in their temperament. I went home feeling a renewed sense of excitement for this country and experience.

Stu talked to his parents tonight. I am really missing being able to just pick up the phone and call my Mom whenever like I was so used to doing at home. I am hoping this Vonage thing works out and we will be able to talk more to family and friends. If it does, it won’t cost us to call. As it is now, the phone call Stu made tonight was about 100 Dirham. Actually, as I write this, he decided I need to call home too so he is going to go get some minutes for my phone so I can call too. It is like ten at night there so I am hoping they are home, and not sleeping. Heh. She is probably at work though with my luck.

Anyway, just wanted to catch up. I hope everyone is doing well back home. Not sure who all reads this, but I miss work and the people there so much. Of course we miss Marcia and company like you wouldn’t believe, and all of our friends, that we are kicking ourselves now for not spending more time with while we were at home.

Josh and Matt waiting for the race to start.

The helicopter.

Sweetest baby ever!

Look at bright white Tommy in the midst of the dark-skinned Arabs! He looked so funny out there!

Eating sand and sunblock again.

Hot and sweaty baby.

There were a bunch of guys jumping out of planes... this is one, and the following picture is right after one landed.

A jumper with the UAE flag.

Josh, Stu, and Matt.

I will post more pictures tomorrow. We just got our internet up and working today finally and Stu wants a chance to get on and play too. So, I will post more from the races and from this weekend tomorrow morning when I get up!

1 comment:

  1. Still looks like everything is going well. As always, hilarious commentary and wonderful pics. Still MISS YOU bunches!!! Will write on MySpace soon!! Love to you all, Jess