The second time is the charm…

Dubai skyline. Image courtesy of trekearth.com

I arrived 48 hours ago and about 47 hours and 58 minutes ago I was already sad about my departure in two months.  Maybe that’s partially due to the fact that these are familiar surroundings – just six months ago I spent two months exploring here.  Sure it feels like home – three quarters of my (adopted) family is in the region.  And of course its fun to go to new places, connect with new people and try out new things.  But, there’s more to it than that.

For one, traveling alone makes me feel full.  Sitting at the bar at The Palm drinking (a way-too-over-priced) martini while waiting for my flight out of JFK, what do I do?  I make friends with the CEO of a GPS software company who generously invites me to come along on a trip to Amsterdam.   Even though I politely turned down the offer, that friendship might come in handy when planning a two-month social-media road trip.  How perfect, right?

Is that a white picket fence in Utah I see?

For another, Dubai has changed since the last time I was here and so have I.  My last trip was about breaking myself down.  It was about realizing that I had ditched everything in my life, but had yet to replace it with anything.  My engagement was over two-years past, yet I was still cynical enough to run from anything resembling a relaltionship.  I had left my job yet hadn’t really figured out what I was going to do to financially support myself.  I had broken all the rules, but replaced them only with questions.  Dubai had also broken all the rules and was paying for it big-time.

This time around it’s about building.  Building writing, building social network, building experiences.  And in the middle of Dubai now and Dubai six-months ago there was a two-month dose of Hawaii.  After I left the Middle East in June, excited, but completely torn apart, Mama Kauai was there to put the pieces back together.  She held me, soothed me and told me that everything was going to be okay.  So, to recap…Dubai broke me down, Hawaii put me back together and Dubai is building me taller.  I can deal with that.

Now that's what I call a view from the living room. Image courtesy of cagriaytas.com

Finally, Dubai is more fun when you know how you fit into it’s crazy world and how to utilize what it’s got.  It has yachts (and the people that own them).  It has race tracks (and the VIP areas connected to them).  It has a lot of people (like the kind that throw weekend-long hotel beach/deep-sea fishing parties for charities).  It just seems to have more toys this time around (such as the massive villa one of my best friends just moved into smack on the beach on Palm Jumierah – you know, that palm tree shaped island.

It screams parties and you know what, so do I…

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