A Day in Dubai
One of the great joys of these first few days in Dubai is spending time with family…especially my nieces aged 7 and 3 1/2. We’re living with family; four adults, two children and a dog all crammed into a two-bedroom apartment.
Today, my wife and I, sister-in-law and nieces all went out for South Indian breakfast this morning. We ate our fill ofPuri Aloo. One of my favorites. We then went to pick up my mother-in-law (the nieces’ grandmother) and went to the mall. We had a blast with the children. The afternoon found my wife and I back home napping very deeply (jetlag is kicking our butts!).
We awoke and decided to go for a walk through the neighborhood in which we are living now. It is like a suburb of the city of Dubai. A quiet area populated mostly by local Arabs, who are a minority in this Emirate (making up only about 15-20% of the population). People were very interested in Saaya, our miniature Schnauzer who was walking with us. It is not common for people to own dogs and walk them here. There was a lot of staring and children barking at her but not daring to come close.
The temperature must have been around a very pleasant 70 degrees and it was wonderful to walk around such a nice community, seeing families out, children playing and neighbors chatting. At the very end of our long walk the call to prayer began. The echo of numerous mosques bouncing of the buildings as the faithful cluster toward the entrances.
Though my faith views differ very much from Islam, it is so heartwarming to see a community come together to pray. Faith is such an open part of life here, relegated not to the list of topics never to be discussed (like religion and politics in the USA) but so much entwined in family and community that it cannot be ignored or written off as private.
My nieces just came in to kiss us goodnight. Family. Community. Living together, sharing our lives. Private, of course, has its place. It can, however, be taken too far.
Today was wonderfully not private.