Dubai - a place that is almost but not quite totally unlike civilization!

Random pictures from Dubai. Not the full monty as it were. I was with mates and they had things to do. So I only saw a part of the city. The pictures were taken from the metro and from the car. A word about the metro... remember when New York City and London first opened their metros ... OH ABOUT A HUNDRED YEARS AGO!!! London - 1863; Paris - July 1900; New York City - October 1904. Yeah.. Dubai September 2009. *sigh* Yeah... I now know what it must have been like to be in those cities at the turn of LAST CENTURY!!!! at a subway opening. The confusion. The chaos. The fear. The technical glitches. "We'll look back on this and laugh." I was told. We weren't laughing yesterday. Oh my no! It was stupid chaos. It was mismanaged. It was FUBAR to the nth degree! First we waited outside the station - yes OUTSIDE the station for almost ten minutes. Why you ask? Well, the man in the suit said it was because it was to crowded downstairs. When we finally got downstairs we entered a large cavernous area.... with very few people.... (compared to leaving the inauguration in DC which had quite a few people in the metro.... or the Central line at Holborn during rush hour.... or the 1 and 9 at Penn Station during rush hour... or Tottanham Court Road stop when half the Victoria line and all the Jubilee line are shut down. Those are CROWDED. This... not so much. Any ways. They had two ticket machines. I kid you not... two. And only two entrances to the trains.... yeppers. Two turn styles. Not kidding. Two. But there were two orderly queues! Until some cop decided he wanted women and children in one line and men in the other. This caused pandemonium as many had been waiting in these two heretofore orderly lines for over ten minutes!!!!! So instead of having two lines you now had a throng of people pushed against each other and no lines! Then this "lovely" cop decided to walk away...... After another five minutes of this chaos, they allowed people thru - while another metro employee took your tube ticket from you and scanned it for you (please don't ask..... ) only for you to be stopped thirty yards beyond at the top of the stairs....... after five minutes you were allowed to walk down the stairs only to be stopped by another employee at .... you guessed it.... Yes, Virginia. Idiocy at its best. You'd think that the planners or even the workers would have viewed a video of metro systems that have been running for a hundred plus years to see the natural flow of people. You'd think that wouldn't you. But oh no! This is the UAE. Logic and common sense need not apply! Once we did get on the train it was quite posh. Lovely in fact! We pulled out into the... night. Yep, we started this in broad day light and by the time the train actually pulled out of the station it was quite dark outside. And then the technical problems began. First stop OK! Next stop the doors wouldn't open. Ten minutes later they said forget about it and moved to the next stop. All's well at the next stop. NOT!!! We didn't make it 20 yards past the station! Sat there for a while. Then moved to the next stop. Waited there (with closed doors) for about ten minutes. Moved about the length of a football field and stopped next to an oncoming train. Stayed there for about ten minutes. Big Fun!!! The announcement said the next stop would be the last stop. We pull in, the doors open, stay open for five minutes, people start to get off. The train employees said to disregard that announcement, the train would be going to Mall of the Emerates - some 4 stops away. And sure enough - the train bypassed the rest of the stops to get to Mall of the Emirates. TWO HOURS LATER (mind you the same journey would have taken about fifteen minutes by taxi). Once we got to the mall, we saw the queues for the train.... Easily a thousand people in a line... a very long line... thru the metro.... down the corridor... into the mall...... a good 200 to 250 yards into the mall were people waiting to get on the metro. Good luck to them. We think the metro shut down after we got off. Seriously doubt anyone informed the people in the line. That would require: communication. Something not really found in the UAE. But the metro has only been operational for three weeks. So maybe in a hundred years it will work with "clockwork efficiency" like New York or London or Paris


-mari- said…
Looks like a nice place to VISIT, but from your reading I can see that its more than just culture shock. I know I couldn't live there. I would respect the culture if I visited, but I know I couldn't live there becuase it isn't my culture AND it sure isn't female friendly!

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