Salam Aleikum everyone !
If you are wondering what has taken me so long to write this post… well Dubai. Dubai has taken me. Over. Completely! Ever since I landed last week I got swallowed by this amazing world that’s nothing like I what expected it to be.
One of the main reasons I wasn’t able to post is that I have to wait for my residential visa to get a broadband. Which is in 4 weeks. Until then I have to use the free Starbucks wi-fi that’s located next to our reception. I have been there every night since my arrival to check my emails and Facebook- and everyone there is so friendly I already know all the staff by name 🙂 I’m hoping it’s gonna score me a few free lattes as I’m going to spend a small fortune here in the next few weeks:)
But let me take it from the top.
When the day of my departure finally arrived I felt weirdly numb. I expected tears and doubts but instead I felt nothing. Until I sat in front of the gate and started a mild anxiety attack. I was extremely tired because I got hardly any any sleep my last few nights in England (and I came to regret that but I will get to that later on) and whilst watching people around me I realised I was the only one travelling alone. Everyone else had a family or friends or some kind of company or so it seemed to me in my emotional state of mind. I managed to hold the tears back I forced myself to board the plane. I swear this was the quickest flight of my life. I still don’t understand where did those seven and a half hours go. I remember trying to watch The Dark Knight Rises and then watching it again because I couldn’t concentrate. Yet- if you asked me I’m not sure whether or not that film was any good. I don’t even know who was in it besides Christian Bale. When the captain announced, that we were on approach I was convinced he was joking! I haven’t even managed to open the bag with my blanket !
Feeling the terra firma under my feet got me my stability back and I started to enjoy myself at last. I have to say I was very impressed by the immaculate organisation of my arrival formalities. A lady with a plate with my name on it pulled my out of the crowd of arriving people (she even knew what I looked like!) and took me thru the immigration with the speed of light. My bags were already collected and waiting for me with my personal driver who took me to my accommodation. The receptionist knew exactly who I was, handed me the keys and I was done. The whole process from initial disembarking to me jumping onto my new bed took less than 50 minutes.
Now to everyone joining sooner or later – I would highly recommend trying to find out if there is a Facebook group or a forum portal of people joining around the same date. Thanks to that I haven’t spent my first day in Dubai alone but among new friends. Of course we went to the Mall because that seems to attract everyone on their first day. Be it a sim card, sunglasses, coffee or simply having people around you are looking for you will definitely find it there. I did anyway. Plus I got to see the water fountain shows which was the best “welcome to Dubai” I could have ever wished for.
The next day was my first induction day to the Airline. I can’t stress enough how important it s to get enough sleep. I didn’t. Somehow whenever stressed, excited or sad my brain refused to switch off and go to sleep. I was all of those for the last week so I haven’t slept well for ages. When I had to get up at 5.30 on Sunday I contemplated quitting this whole idea of becoming an air hostess at once. Having no hot water for my morning shower has not helped either ( another tip for all the new starters : when turning off the air-con at night make sure it’s not the hot water switch!). However I have made it to the Headquarters and was once again blown away by the immaculate organisation of the whole thing. I won’t bore you with the details (I’m not allowed to disclose any of the information anyway) but the next couple of days were filled with loads of sitting around, plenty of form signing, more sitting around, corporate induction, health and safety, talking, meeting your batch mates, drinking buckets of coffee (which has been delicious everywhere I tried so far!), even more sitting around and no sleep whatsoever . One whole day was spent on completing the final medicals. Heads up for the new starters : DO NOT bother with any X-rays (dental or chest). It’s not needed and you are gonna waste your precious money that can be spent elsewhere (like in the Dubai Mall:). Only do them if you have a serious doubts there could be something wrong with you. Otherwise just leave it like I did… What you should definitely do is get all your vaccinations done before you come out here. It will be noted if you haven’t got all of them, you will be asked to have them done here and although you won’t have to pay for them in cash money will be deducted from your salary.
Today is Friday which is really a Saturday in the arabic world – meaning it’s my FIRST DAY OFF! I have managed to to finally get some sleep to talk of so I’m feeling energized and ready to explore! I’m meeting couple of friends in a bit and we will see where our fancy takes us. I will make sure to update you on that sooner rather than later 🙂
Our batch went out last night – to the Barasti beach which I believe is where everyone goes on their first night out in Dubai. We had a great time – it was quite nice to see everyone out of their uniform t-shirts with loose hair and no red lippy 🙂 I have not recognised half of them without it!
Anyway here are a few pictures as a little taster before I put together a proper post about this whole experience.
Love you all and keep reading x
P.S. Did you know the hobbits in “The Lord of the Rings” are cute hobbits whereas the “Hobbit” hobbits are not cute hobbits? That’s one of the reasons you shouldn’t go and see that film apparently…