This past weekend we road tripped to Fujairah, which is on the east coast of the UAE (Dubai being on the west coast). It was about a 2.5 hour drive which was more fun in our own car! The mountains became visible about halfway there and that excited Clare so much. We saw several donkeys, goats and deer as we drove, no camel sightings this time however. The hotel was amazing. Huge pool, swim-up bar (although that was closed due to Ramadan) several restaurants, the best of which was Taste, a Thai place. We shared the gastronomy taster meal so were able to sample so many of their dishes. The coconut curry, which I never would have ordered on my own, was fantastic!! I had to restrain myself from drinking the leftover broth. I totally would have in the privacy of my own home. On Friday we drove ALL around the Fujairah area. We visited forts, mosques, a castle, and other places. I could name them but that would bore the crap out of everyone, including myself. So here are some pics of us at those unnamed locales:
I am finally road legal in the U.A.E. after having lived here 20 months! It was a relatively painless getting the license, which was a great surprise. In life whenever it comes time to deal with a government building I always assume the worst.
The first document required for me to get my license was a “No Objection” letter from my sponsor, AKA my spouse. Basically I can’t drive without my husband’s permission. This is so insane to Americans that it is hard to understand, but it’s just the way life is over here. We had no idea exactly what the letter should say, nor could anyone tell us, so Shawn winged it.
They accepted it so good job honey!
The only other documents required were my Emirates ID, a vision test signed by an optometrist, my passport with visa stamp, my U.S. driver’s license, Shawn’s passport with visa, and 410 dirhams cash (about $120). No driving or paper test.
While we waited for it to get printed Clare had fun as there was a kid’s section with toys. I enjoyed some peace and quiet as we were the only customers there. Different than what I remember DMV visits being like!
We bought a 2010 Honda Pilot from a friend. It is an 8 seater so plenty of room for 3 car seats – yikes! I love driving it but it is so large it is extremely hard to park. Getting around town is getting easier, the first time Clare and I ventured out we tried to go to the mall literally 6 blocks away and it took almost an hour. I made a wrong turn and ended up in an area I didn’t know, and google maps wasn’t helpful at all. Luckily I have found a GPS app that is made by the local transport authority and it is much more accurate. It’s so nice to have the freedom to come and go as we please!