Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Time to go!!

I did it!! I survived the longest time of the year! Wii-hoooo!
Oh my, these past two months have felt like four, at least... Time has gone by painfully slow, and not much have been happening - but now the fridge has been cleaned, the ironing pile taken care of, the bags are packed and I'm ready for some action again! For some LIFE!
Summer holidays - here we come!


The highlight of this past week has been watching some of the World Cup football, cheering on Sweden, of course!


We watched both the 3-0 game against Mexico, and tonight's game against Switzerland at our friends' house, nicer together.



And YEEEEEES, I can't believe we are through to the semi-finals..!! Sweden must be boiling with celebrations right now, and I'm so excited to be watching the next game actually IN Sweden!

We have a very early start tomorrow but I am so excited I don't know if I'll be able to sleep now.
I CAN'T WAIT to be able to be outside, in the greenery, the pleasant temperatures, the nature. I CAN'T WAIT to go running again, to go biking and feel the freedom. I CAN'T WAIT not to have to talk to myself but go see good friends, hug them so hard, and let them all know how much they mean to me. I CAN'T WAIT to have some great fun, eat some good food, get out and about and explore and adventure!
I CAN'T WAIT!

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Midsommarfika

It's Swedish Midsummer tomorrow, but since we have already sort of celebrated it this year (early, but still), I'm not too fussed about driving all the way to Dubai to join the official celebrations.
But it was still nice to be invited for a bit of summer-"fika" at Lindas' this morning, with strawberry cake and everything.



Hygge!

A while back Pia and I "infiltrated" the, quite large, Danish group of girls here in Abu Dhabi. A group that is slightly more active with meet-ups than the Swedes. I guess Pia, being part Danish and married to a Dane, had more of a connection than me really; but I do sometimes feel more Danish than Swedish and really like these girls, so I try to come along as often as I can.


Yesterday a few of them met up for a breakfast at the Fairmont, to wish each other happy summer. It was a very enjoyable morning, both the food and the company.


I was dressed in blue and yellow though, not really on purpose, just wanted to wear my new Hollie Woods Swedish clogs!

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Two more weeks

Since the Hijra calendar is a lunar calendar, Ramadan falls about 12 days earlier every year. In previous years Ramadan, and the Ramadan school timings, have felt like a slow downhill slide into the summer holidays.
This year though, Ramadan finished last week so we now still have a couple of weeks left of school - with normal school timings again. Guess if it was rough to get up an hour earlier again the other day...

At least we had a long weekend off last weekend for Eid Al Fitr, and we chose to spend it in Dubai.
First we met up with a longtime friend of Nathans (and old collegue of mine), Claus. He lives in Hong Kong but was here with work. We found a cool Greek restaurant where to have lunch, and then the boys had a few beers at the next door bar.




We spent the night with our Danish friends the Dehlis. Everybody enjoyed catching up before the summer holidays.


Finally we came back to Abu Dhabi in time to celebrate the birthday of one of our little neighbourhood friends, Orin. We never say no to cake!

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Family iftar

We are approaching Eid Al Fitr, expected to fall this Friday, so this week was our last chance to experience an iftar together. Last night all four of us went to join a group of the SWEA girls and their families, for an iftar at the Westin.


It was a nice evening with a lot of delicious food. You really have to brace yourself not to overeat at these buffets! I tried some of the local desserts this time, and whereas they have exciting tastes, they are all too, too sweet for me.



Lovely to get to wish each other happy holidays before the summer!

Saturday, 9 June 2018

We do what we can

I always enjoy special celebrations, and this week for the Swedish National Day - 6th of June - I wanted to celebrate somehow. But home alone with the kids (N had a sling to Dublin) and just completely bored out of my mind, it only stretched to decorating the dining table and doing some baking with Linnea:



We do what we can.

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Same procedure as last year

A week into the month of June and life is rolling by, slowly, and with the same themes as past June months here in the sandpit: heat, boredom - and goodbyes.

On Monday I went to a farewell coffee morning to see off two friends who are both returning to Sweden this summer. Sad to see them go, but goodbyes are part of the expat life, it's the same every year at this time.


And this coffee morning was my only happening this week, now my calendar is completely empty, until next Monday. Bored is an understatement.

Finally we are expecting a(nother) heat wave in the next few days, with an emerge of cumulus clouds which will cause temperatures between 47 and 50 degrees. Alerts have been circulated with advice on how to deal with these high temperatures. Inside living it is.

Friday, 1 June 2018

Iftar in the sky

Last night I went to experience my first iftar (=the first meal after you break the fast), together with Linda at the St Regis.



Ever since we did the Helipad Supper there, we have been talking about how we wanted to see their Abu Dhabi Suite; and now we got the opportunity thanks to the St Regis hosting an 'Iftar in the sky' up there every weekend during the Ramadan.




The Abu Dhabi Suite is the world's highest suspended suite, a private suite over two floors, with two separate wings and a lovely 360 degree views!


Iftar is the evening meal with which Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset. The fast is traditionally broken with a laban drink, and dates:



The amazing buffet was served up all over the main floor of the suite, so much food, and all really beautifully presented, and super yum:





This iftar only accommodates 50 guests each evening, so it felt really special getting to sit in the big, central majlis and enjoy this lovely meal:





We also got to walk around and have a look at the rest of the 1500 m2 suite. For example we got to see the guest rooms, here's one of the three bedrooms in the suite:


The male prayer room:


A private movie cinema:


And a private spa, with jacuzzi, steam rooms and sauna:


I did have high expectations on this experience, and they were more than met, for sure. The food was amazing and it felt very special getting to enjoy an iftar at this unique location. Another magic Abu Dhabi moment.