13-07-16 Fifty Degree Heat

Thursday 14th July 2016

Only those of us who have lived in the desert bowl of the Middle East can really comprehend what it feels like to be outdoors during the rising summer heat. Today was a doozy – extreme haze, hazardous glare of the sun, polluted sky, pummeling heat and strange gusts of wind that seemed to drive further the rays of the sun into the tops of our heads.

Yet step out into these harsh elements we do. Walking the one kilometer from our residence at Al Kawakeb to our previous skyscraper, The Tower, in order to bid a friend of mine who lives there a final farewell before she repatriates back to Paris, Kingsley and I stormed through a radiating Sheikh Zayed Road, head down, our mission to get to see Mercedes as quickly as possible, without burning up alive.

We did it of course, in good humours and arriving at Mercedes skyscraper covered in sweat. As unladylike as this sounds (and truly is), no one bats an eyelid here when met with a perspiring pal. It’s unavoidable, truth be told. The clever antidote to presenting at a friend’s doorstep rolling in sweat is to take refuge in the tundra like foyer of the apartment block (Dubai does worldclass air conditioning).

And so dear Mercedes greeted us in her near empty apartment; just a tv, laptop and her canaries left to pack. She could see on our skin the aftermath of enduring that walk to visit her so off we all went to her pool, to dive in, cool down and restore some balance to our frazzled brains.

Only two more months of Summer’s fifty degree heat to go…

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