March 1, 2010: Dubai, UAE:
It’s still such a weird phenomenon to jump on a plane and then 12-15 hours later be halfway around the world.
To think how many months this journey would’ve taken us a century ago is staggering. And yet we get on a plane like we walk to the store, it’s just such a common thing.
Arriving at Dubai I was struck by the newness of the place. The airport terminal was brand new and the ceilings tall with huge columns…marble floors, Rolex signs in English and Arabic, men dressed in traditional Arab clothing, soldiers and military types as well as a mixture of all races. Dubai is the crossroads for the Mideast and yet also reminded me of a big of Las Vegas. Loud, showy and new.
In the shuttle to the bus we took a ride to our hotel for the night. Not fancy, but very comfortable, and a ten minute ride from the airport. We had never done a long layover during this flight and so glad that we did. After flying for over 16 hours, it’s just nice to get up and stretch without rushing to catch the next 8 1/2 hour flight.
Getting a shower, a nap (even though your own world and body clock is literally a half a day behind you) and a chance to regroup is a good thing and not to be discounted. The next time we fly this way, we’ll do this again, it worked so well. We were so wiped that we didn’t even get dinner, though we probably should have.
When it got to around 4:30 I was getting very hungry and we were all rising out of our jet lagged coma. We got down early for breakfast and just devoured the food on the buffet. From fresh fruit, to tasty pastries and pancakes, it was worth the wait. We then made our way to the airport for the second leg. Eight and a half hours from Dubai to Durban (another nice thing about Emirates — they fly right to Durban, most airlines don’t, and that would mean ANOTHER flight from Johannesburg to Durban — not a long flight be another leg and when you’re with two little ones, those extra legs mean a lot).
Here Kate gives Nicki a hug as we wait for our boarding passes while sitting atop the counter at the Emirates service desk after our flight arrived from LAX.