First moments in Dubai
We are in Dubai. After traveling for 12 and a half hours, sitting with an exhausted and loving Pakistani mother and her two kids who was reticent to tell me she was Muslim, we landed in the gleaming Dubai airport. There were gigantically tall mirrored columns and palm trees; at customs we were greeted by men garbed in the traditional long white dishdasha, white ghutrah covering a ghafiyah (the crocheted prayer cap), and secured by a black Agal.
Our hotel, XVA Art Hotel, is a quaint and open small hotel (our style!) in Old Dubai. We have had tea, heard multiple loud and clear Islamic calls to prayer, visited the ATM for a few dirham, eaten delicious emitari food (sans wine) in an open air courtyard restaurant where smokey, freshly-made, warm naan was served, and have even seen some Christmas decorations.
Time to explore on the Big Bus City Tour this morning!