Friday 31 May 2019

Around the home and garden in Dubai and South Africa May 2019

This month I've been at home in Dubai with a 12 day break to South Africa in the middle of Ramadan.

During Ramadan, eating, drinking and smoking in public during daylight hours is illegal and unfortunately there is little consistency with opening hours and who has a licence for drink in or take away only and in this heat high 30's I find life in Dubai quite difficult, so I tend to escape for as much of it as I can.

Ramadan decorations at Mall of the Emirates

Eating and drinking only during the day, behind the curtain

Both the cat and the dog have been in an out of boarding as they do most of the summer while we travel and are always pleased to see us when we're home.

This stray cat is being cared for by one of our neighbours but likes to sit on our doorstep where the air con escapes underneath and keeps him cool during the day in the shade.

We've had some strange weather for May, even seeing some rain, but it has meant we've been able to spend more time outdoors than normal at this time of year. There has been time by the pool, on the beach and in the garden.

The garden has been doing well this year also. The lawn had its final cut. I researched how to care for the cactus over the summer.

Water once a week. Deep and slow watering over a 4-6 hour period, by making small holes in the lid and turning the bottle upside down.

No new purchases for the house, just a rearrange so we're not sitting under the full blast of the air con.

South Africa, our former home for 4 years, I have to be on high alert with my personal safety when I visit, something I've noticed I'm doing more of in the UK also, since leaving there almost 9 years ago. Dubai is so safe, we often forget we can't behave the same way everywhere else 

On Safari

This is NOT Bob. It's Grace she was rescued from the same area a year after Bob and is 3 years younger.

Part of the reason for my visit to South Africa is support my friends with their charity work. I'm no longer affiliated with the charities directly.

Cleaning out, sorting through donations and tidying the storage unit.

Always time for some shopping at an African Market and a typical mall.

A drive round the countryside and over the dam. The water is polluted as far as the eye can see.

Garden goals.
Lemon trees and homegrown Granadilla

Succulents on safari

Tea rooms

And of course time for friends and lovely food and drink. It's always great to catch up with friends, something I don't have many of in Dubai. It's important to me to maintain contact throughout the year also.

In other news this month I've decided to ditch the linkys other than #pocolo #mysundayphoto and 'Where am I in the world?' and #project365.

We were finally able to share our news that we're going to become grandparents and I've had my final round of dental surgery and have been able to ditch the plate. Won't be finished until mid July.

In June I'm off to Ireland with a friend, then visiting child 2 and 2a in Northern Ireland before flying to the UK for a week.

So that's all from me for May, how's it been for you?

Sunday 26 May 2019

Guess where I am in the world?

Everything is the same. What happened to being different?

Take a look at the images below. They will all be familiar to you. If not the brand, but as food items, or shops.

These photos have been taken over a 5 year period. In the UK, Dubai, South Africa, Canada, Egypt and Germany. Later on this year I will be visiting Australia and will be no doubt having similar observations to you.

Nothing is different.

Everything is the same.

Is that Waitrose in the UK? and Tesco? of course, they're British companies. Think again. The Waitrose is in Dubai.

Halloween and Christmas images, can't be Dubai, can it? Yes it's Dubai.

Foreign food aisles. When you leave the UK everything is foreign food isn't it? 

Tim Hortons? Easy in Canada - Dubai

Red bus? Must be London - Canada

Wimpy? That's South Africa surely - Canada

Large Malls? Again has to be Dubai - Canada

Apart from buildings, landscapes, currencies, languages and accents, there is little different to see around the world outside of the tourist areas. Yes there's game drives in South Africa, the Niagara Falls in Canada, historical buildings, castles to explore in the UK and Germany. 

But outside of that, there is fuel to put in the car, coffee to be drunk, food shopping to be done, clothes to be purchased.

I remember as a teen going into H&M, it was in France, it was glamourous. Visiting a foreign supermarket and trying all the different foods. Having a special treat by visiting a coffee shop.

But now everything is everywhere, you can buy anything wherever you go and if you can't buy it, you can order it online.

The magic of travel for me is narrowing.