Last week there was an impressive security effort at our hotel-home as the Crown Prince of Brunei was staying here with his family and quite a few others. The girls and I stepped out of our rooms to head to breakfast one day to find 3 purple-camo clad soldiers in our corridor (special police apparently!) Quite a jump from Reigate’s celeb-about-town Shane Ritchie.
HRH left on Thursday, and so did we. M got hotel-home early and we drove north along the coast for 3 hours, passing lots of banana plantations and just 2 camels, then turned left and over the border into the UAE. As we approached the border we watched the flat terrain change into rocky hills which I took photos of on the way back. Interestingly, there’s a section of road after you cross into UAE from Oman that runs back through Oman again, with a fence surrounding it. The trip went well until we got to Dubai, then we found ourselves in thick heavy traffic on an 8 lane road. It took us an hour to get through Dubai to the hotel, and 20 mins before we got to the hotel, thegirlwhocriedsick was sick… all over herself. For some odd reason the guy checking us in thought that what a tired looking family, with a 3yr old girl covered in sick really needed was a sales pitch to upgrade to a suite (something we are kindly getting for free here in Muscat). I felt myself getting quite cross.. Said guy was lucky it was M who went back down to ask where the extra bed was and not me.
Friday was a shopping mania. IKEA staff helped manage the logistics of 8 flatbed trolleys very well (this was after already loading the car with 2 IKEA regular trolleys, plus an M&S load) We should see the furniture again later this week. I should add here that The Company is paying for all this new house gear, thankfully, and I have also been looking for second hand gear which is what I like doing in the UK. Perhaps I should introduce Oman to freecycle.org? Still got 2 guest beds to sort and a few others bits, but great gains were made. We may have to leave Oman again this coming weekend but that will be by air (phew) and we hope to have the time to catch up with some friends then, plus celebrate M’s birthday and a ‘with-the-kids-nod’ to Valentines day.
Headed off in good time on Saturday morning and were out of Dubai in a sniff of the time it took us to drive through on Thursday. L was given an empty bag and strict interactions to only say she was sick if she really was. Camel spotting went much better on our return trip as can be seen by my photos. I’m pleased I got one of the nursing camel, but sadly missed the token camel-on-a-truck. To give you all a good taste of Arabian roads I also took a pic of the Toyota trucks, and sand dunes and sand, and desert. We drove through Sharjah and we think Ajmaan too, so with Dubai that makes 3 of the 7 Emirates that make up UAE. Saudi Arabia is a country totally separate, as is Oman. I say this as a disturbing number of people think both are in Dubai.
Thankfully both girls slept for a couple of hours on our return drive, and there was no vomit. We arrived back just in time for the buffet lunch but that was interrupted many times by L and S wanting to run off and charge around the gardens and pools. We took them for a scoot which ended up on the beach in the afternoon. Loads of local families were out having BBQ’s and sharing bubbly pipes, all wrapped up warm against the 22 deg C weather. The girls enjoyed a very wet paddle, with S shouting ‘seaside’ repeatedly. If we can figure out how to, there may be an additional mini post with photos of them from M’s phone.
Finally, after that busy weekend, L started at the amazeballs nursery today. It was just a 2.5hrs session to settle her and S and I waited there, but she loved it. I am hoping tomorrow she will ask what the rabbits and chickens names are. I took them back to the beach after lunch and with luck, will be able to upload a video….
Anyone got any motion sickness prevention suggestions for 3 yr olds?
hmmmm… sorry but photos will have to come along later. The internet is painfully slow tonight (probably something to do with the RAIN we had earlier this eve) and I am pooped and ready for bed. Will try to load them up again tomorrow.