Sunday, 25 April 2010

And hello again!!

Hello everyone, I'm back!!!! Well what a trip! What an amazing first three weeks and what a stressful final week!!! Now if you haven't heard about this ash cloud malarky, you've either been in a coma for the last week or so, or you live in some weird sort of bubble. It has been totally mental, and I know there's been tremendous coverage of this on the news in the UK, but you can't quite understand how crazy it really was unless you've been through it yourself. Flights cancelled, endless phone calls to the airline, rebookings, more flights cancelled, work people in the UK who couldn't really help, travel agency who knew even less than I did (oh yes madam you have a flight tomorrow morning, no you moron, it's been cancelled haven't you heard?!!), negotiating with the hotel to carry on putting me up until goodness knows when... you get the drift. But the stress? Honestly, my stress levels went through the roof. Would I end up having to find my way home by boat??! For a short period of time, I did picture myself on a cruise ship from Dubai to Southampton...! In the end, I got on a flight yesterday morning, so just one week later than originally planned.

Anyway, let's try and forget about this horrendous episode. I'm back, maybe not for good (may have to go back in a month or so), but I'm home right now, and it's never felt better. Wish I could have brought some heat back with me though!

So, to tell you a little bit about these last few weeks. Well I'm not too sure where to start actually. I feel like I have to be honest though. As I mentionned in my previous post I did have access to Blogger. Which means that I was able to occasionally keep up with your blogs, but I just didn't feel like writing here. To be fair, I spent most of my time out of the office, and when I was in the office, well I had work to do! I guess I could have made time, but I just didn't fancy it. Everyone goes through phases don't they, but this is the longest I've stopped since I started this little blog last year. I found that the things I usually talk about, what matters to me in my normal day to day life, just seemed so removed from the world I found myself living in temporarily, it just didn't seem right to write. So basically I had no time and no desire to come online really.

Things were so different out there, I'm not exagerating when I say you can't quite understand what it's like until you've been there yourself. So these were four very interesting and at the same time very weird weeks. In the UK, we're all so concerned about where our food comes from, food miles, carbon footprint etc. Out there, well it's the desert really, so most things that you consume are shipped from abroad. Fruits and vegetables mostly come from Syria, Lebanon etc. I went to an American supermarket and they were selling produce from the US and Australia.... But talking about food, you might assume I did a bit of cooking? I was staying in one of those 'hotel appartments' after all, which had a little fully equiped kitchen. Well nothing. Rien. Nada. Me, the self confessed food addict, who loves to cook and bake and eat, I did nothing. Absolutely nothing for four whole weeks. And knitting? Another one of my major hobbies I usually can't live without in the UK? Well I came prepared, had a bag full of yarn and needles. The problem started when I realised I wasn't allowed to bring my massive size 15 plastic needles and sewing needles on the plane with me. I had plans you see. It's a 7 hour flight after all. So off they went in the suitcase, and basically never came out. Oh I looked at that bag. Felt a little guilty at times, not really understandnig why I wasn't getting the Urge. But that was it. No cooking and no knitting for a whole month. And did I mention the eating? I mean you know me by now, I looooove my food. Nothing can usually stop me. I'm a food machine. A food monster. But then I'd never been to a desert before. And this is big news. The desert stopped me alright. I usually snigger at people who go on about how the heat cuts their appetite. I guess the type of heat we get in Europe doesn't cut my appetite. But one clear thing out there was this. The desert conquered me. Oh yes. Totally. Absolutely. My eating became erratic to say the least. My favourite meal of the day, breakfast, soon became occasionally non existent or consisted of a single banana. Honestly, this is not me. One main meal a day, literally? I'm a three meal type of girl, and I always have to have stuff to snack on in the office because I get peckish. Well there, it just didn't happen. It was just so hot. So so so hot. I had to spend some time on site, outside. The temperature was typically in the 30s, one day it reached 38C. That's how hot it was. And it's only April!!! It does actually get worse in the summer, mostly because the humidity goes right up. This last week though, I've been moslty in the office, and with this flight crazyness, I might have had crisps for dinner. Crisps and more crisps for dinner. Yeah, I feel a little ashamed now! But that's me, comfort eating all round!

So there, you'll have to bear with me while I sort out my millions of photos. I'll be back to show you where I went and all the amazing things I saw. It was never a part of the world that attracted me, but there are so many stunning things out there. You might even be tempted to come visit. And if the sights don't do it for you, I'm sure the weight loss inducing heat might convince a few!! ;-)

So voila. Lovely to be back my lovelies, I'll make sure I have a look at all your blogs very soon I promise and leave my little words of wisdom some comments - because I care!! And because even though I may  have kept up with some of you, I definitely didn't have the time to leave some comments - I'm so sorry! xxx


Ali said...

Glad you've arrived back safely. I lived in Saudi Arabia as a teenager and Qatar as a child. That heat really sucks the life out of you, doesn't it?

Taz said...

Just glad to hear you're home safe and sound :)

Heather said...

Welcome back to England :)
x x x x x x

Ana said...

Welcome back! The weight loss thing sounds great, but I'm not sure I could stand the heat. Can't wait to see your photos.

The Girl said...

Hurray!! You are home!! Totally understand what you mean about not blogging - I guess I'll forgive you :) You don't get these opportunities too often, you can't waste your time feeling bad about not blogging.

Might have to invest in a ticket to Dubai if it means instant weight loss!

Looking forward to seeing pics and hearing stories.

Jill said...

Great to have you back and look forward to hearing more about the things you've been upto.