Monday, 26 November 2018

Good to guide

To be able to work as a Tour Guide here in the the UAE you have to get licensed from the Department of Culture and Tourism by participating in a course, and do three different exams.
Every two years you then have to sit a written exam, to make sure you are up to date and still know your stuff; today it was my turn.

I do know my stuff, but I still got nervous, I guess that's normal in any exam situation. Luckily there was only a few questions I hesitated about, and I even though I do know I got some of them wrong -  there must have been more right because I passed, wii-hoo!

So now I'm good to guide for another two years!

Saturday, 24 November 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

After the Christmas Market, we continued the festive celebrations at our ex-neighbours (now in Motor City, Dubai), with celebrating Thanksgiving.

Chad and Kristen have had us over for Thanksgiving for many years now, sadly this year Nathan missed out once again, but the rest of us sure ate for the whole family..! The menu was extensive, as always... and very... bourbon infused...

It was the usual suspects, with a few new additions. It's nice to see them every now and then, unfortunately a lot less often since Kristen & Chad moved to Dubai, but still.
It was the first time I saw their new place, which they moved into over the summer. I got so, so jealous of their amazing balcony, look, it was huge!

Aiden had read about Thanksgiving and wanted us to go around the table and say what we were grateful for. Everybody had very nice things to say, but Linnea touched me the most when she said: "I am grateful for my friends and family, and I'm grateful I have everything I need".
She made sure afterward I knew she still wants Christmas presents, ha ha, but it felt really good that she has clocked the difference between 'needing' and 'wanting' and was able to put that difference in words.

As the sun set, there was "Cornhole"-games being played while we tried to digest the main course enough to be able to enjoy some lovely desserts.

Om, nom, nom, nom! The dessert table, with amongst other things, Chad's famous Maple Bourbon Bacon (Oh yes!) ice cream, mmm!

And we all even got given take-away boxes ready made up for us, with artwork by Aiden - 4 years old. I particularly liked our one, that's Nathan on the right, Lucas next to him with the flat hair, then Linnea and on the far left with the big head - that's me! Cause obviously - I'm the boss!

Thanks guys - we are thankful for you!

Two in one

It's Saturday night and we are looking back on a super busy weekend.
This morning Linnea had Lucia practice with some other Swedish kids, and this afternoon Lucas had drama practice at school. In meantime I was at work, doing a panoramic city tour with some Danish super F1-fans.
We ended our afternoon passing by the food trucks on the way home to pick up some sushi for dinner, I thought we deserved an easy night.

Yesterday was busy too, we managed to celebrate two holidays in one day!
We started out with a Christmas Market in the Norweigan Seaman's Center in Dubai:

Lucas was helping out at the market as part of his confirmation schedule. So Linnea and I dropped him there before the market opened and went for a quick drive to Deira City Center to check out the Black Friday deals, before we came back to enjoy some of the Swedish baked goodies and had a look amongst the stands. Of course we did some shopping, but we were also lucky enough to win at the raffle!

Lucas in the meantime had been selling hot dogs, but when we arrived he was on door duty with a clicker, counting all the visitors. Good job!

After having enjoyed the first 'lussekatt' of the season, I really feel the Christmas spirit, I think it's just about time to dig out all my Christmas decorations!

Thursday, 22 November 2018

Meeting the NZ All Black 7s & Black Ferns 7s

Last night Lucas took part in a special rugby training session at the Cricket Stadium, with the NZ All Black 7s and the Black Ferns 7s.

All rugby kids in the capital were invited and Lucas went along with some of his mates from their school rugby team. Great opportunity for the kids, and it looked like they all had so much fun!

After the training session, the Black Ferns 7s showed a few of the drills they use at trainings. Lucas said he found it really interesting, even just watching.

And then it was autograph signings:

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The Little Lunch Trip - Korea

The SWEA group has added a new happening in their monthly program, called 'The Little Lunch Trip'. It's supposed to be a reoccurring lunch meet, at a different country's restaurant every month. First time was today and the first stop was - Korea!

We started in the shop part, where they had all sort of exciting things! Some we knew what it was, others were a bit more indefinable...

Then we moved over to the restaurant. It was very small, only about just fit our group and four other customers! We ordered a bunch of different things and passed it around the table to share.

It was all really tasty, even the spicier stuff. It didn't just burn in your mouth, it was just full of flavour. I really enjoyed it, might go back some day!

Next time they are going to a vegetarian South Indian restaurant to eat dosai. I really hope it'll be scheduled on a day I can come along!

Sunday, 18 November 2018

A promise is a promise

When we were in Denmark this summer, someone somehow managed to promise Konrad that once they got here we would all be going to participate in a paintball game... Apparently this is ALL he has talked about since, and there was no way we could go back on that promise. Katja even checked the week before they came that we hadn't forgotten.., and the first thing he asked me when he arrived was: "Which day are we going paintballing?"

So, Saturday when we were all free, off to the paintball arena we went!

We got to play two games, switching teams at half time. It was all about shooting the other team as many times as possible, and oh my it was fun! No tears this time, but quite a few nice bruises..!

I think this was Konrad's absolute favourite day! He and Lucas were allowed to finish off the remaining bullets in a 1-1 game.

 The sweaty after photo:

All famished after our big afternoon, we picked up some Indian take-away on the way home and finished off their stay with some super yummy food and a chill-out session on the sofa.

And early this morning we waved them off in a taxi as they went back up to Dubai to catch a flight out to Vietnam. So good to finally have had them staying at ours though, and really good to hear them say "Next time we come..." Ha ha, now they're hooked! Welcome back anytime Enderleins!

Oh yeah for Friday!

The Enderleins had heard both us and other friends talk about the Friday Brunch experience and were very keen on trying it for themselves. We decided to take them to the Yas Hotel, as it's straddling the F1 track the venue is impressive in itself, and last time Linnea and I went (with the Hybholts) the food was absolutely amazing.

We had an absolutely over-indulging afternoon with so, so much food and drink... It wasn't very busy at the brunch but it didn't matter much, we made our own party! I'm so old I do prefer when the music is at a level for conversation anyway!

The oysters were so fresh and delicious, I had to go back for more more than once. LOVE seafood!

Katja ended up with pretty much one glass of everything by the end... ha ha!

Once the brunch was finished we sent the kids back home, and went upstairs for some after-brunch drinks:

We decided to stay until sunset, as the Yas Hotel lights up and becomes so spectacular in the evenings. Really, really pretty both from the outside, and like this - from the inside:

We then continued the evening at a Mulled Wine evening at friends, but I didn't get any photos there so I leave you with one more from the Yas Hotel skybar: