Chronicles of one girl's journey to London - from conception to eventual migration.

UAE

Dubai is what I would once have called my hometown. When I first moved to Canada, it's what I would answer with when people asked me where I was from. Now, not so much . . . See, Dubai has changed. The landmarks and places I loved are either gone or no longer interesting for people.

Dubai 1990-2000
The first place we lived was "next to the blue building at Falcon Roundabout". It was, literally, a large roundabout with a garden and a big staute of a falcon in the very centre. The roundabout, like most of the others, has now been changed into an intersection and the original falcon statue has been moved to a place called Mirdif Park.

Our building would be to the right I think
Other landmarks included the Clock Tower Roundabout, the Flame Roundabout and the World Trade Centre. At the time, that was located in the middle of nowhere and was the tallest building in Dubai at 489 feet. 

Marjor areas for shopping were Karama, Satwa and Jumeirah. Later on, Dubai built City Centre in Deira. It was the largest mall any of us had ever seen! Now, while still busy, it is certainly not the most exciting.

I lived in a Dubai where the world ended, so to speak, at the Hard Rock Cafe on Sheikh Zayed Road. Now, it's closed though still stands (until some developer decides to tear it down I assume) and Sheikh Zayed road extends for miles from this point to brand new housing developments and larger than large malls.

Then: Hard Rock Dubai on Sheikh Zayed Road
When we left in March 2000, I didn't return for 9 years. I had no real reason to. We never had any family there, and my best friend moved to Toronto with me. So, I missed a lot of the development that made Dubai into what it is today. I missed when Deira and Bur Dubai stopped being great places to go, and I missed when all my usual places to hang out became "old Dubai".

When I went back, I saw nothing but tall glass buildings. They'd even cleaned up the gold souk! And everyone knows you don't clean up a gold souk. It's meant to be old and smelly and charming.

Sheikh Zayed Road now
And, of course, Dubai isn't even the same geographical size as when I lived there. We now have extensions due to the Palm Island(s). Only one is fully complete and functional, but it has added a whole new neighbourhood on the sea!

We also lived in Sharjah for a few years before moving back to Dubai (Garhoud, to be more specific). We lived right by the airport and only around the corner from our school. And the funny thing is that in those days we lived really far out as well.

I don't really miss Dubai but I did really enjoy my childhood there and all the things we experienced there.

Find other posts I've written about Dubai.

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