The important thing is to remember to sleep.
The standard here in Abu Dhabi, and the rest of the world I suppose, is to work for the weekend. You go about your business with limited social interaction Sunday through Thursday afternoon… then hit full speed ahead Thursday night through Saturday afternoon. (Have I mentioned our work week is Sunday to Thursday?)
This weekend in particular was packed with events and good times.
Thursday night we celebrated Halloween… it’s not much of a to-do here. Imagine that in a Muslim country. A few stores had a little section filled with cheap orange and black junk, but in general you could ignore it.
One of the teachers volunteered to host a Halloween party… and teachers can party! All in all it was a pretty fun night complete with live music, in which I stayed up way past my bedtime. Molly was a good sport to actually get up out of bed to attend the festivities with me. I played off one of my favorite song lyrics (“How can you stand it, when I run when I run like a bandit“) and dressed as a… bandit. Yep, that’s my basmati rice bag magically transformed into stolen cash. Molly went as the cutest explorer I’ve ever seen on safari.
Friday we headed back down to the Corniche for more Formula One celebrating. I just love free entertainment!
The night’s event was “Beats on the Beach” … a concert featuring a very famous Lebanese singer, Ragheb Alama, a famous DJ from the UAE, and … Timbaland. Yes. You can laugh. I attended a Timbaland concert! (Did I mention it was free and on a beach?!) And it was bad. Like, really bad. For those of you like me who are only vaguely familiar with the gent… Timbaland is a big time producer and rapper in the Hip Hop/R&B/Rap world having worked with tons of famous entertainers such as Justin Timberlake.
To put it bluntly… he’s that guy in the background of the song making the grunting sounds every few measures. And that’s pretty much what he did on stage last night. It was like listening to your sibling sing over a recording of a rap song they think they know. To make it sound even worse, his DJ kept cutting the music every few seconds so the crowd could sing along. That would have been ok… except the crowd didn’t know the songs. But don’t feel too bad for Timbaland. He didn’t know the crowd. After telling us it was his first time in Abu Dhabi he declared his love for Dubai. That’s a no-no. Then he explained how much he loves Arabic music…”I love Arabic music so much I was the only one who went to India to be in a Bollywood film and brought the music back in this song” [cue Big Pimpin’]. Oh and you want to know how much he loves UAE? “I love this country so much… my trainer is from Kuwait!!!” Nice. He became pretty frustrated with the crowd’s lack of enthusiasm and resorted to randomly playing Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit. I have to say… that’s a strange way to revive a crowd at a Hip Hop show. But it worked.
I’m finding my outlets for entertainment are vastly different than what they would be at home. For now I’m just trying to roll with it. We’ll see…