Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Joshua Bell in Abu Dhabi

Had a great day up in Abu Dhabi with a group of friends.  We got dressed up and went out for French food at Le Beaujolias in the Mecure hotel.  I would recommend this place to anyone.  The food was fantastic, the decor adorable and the desert came on big plates...my chocolate mouse came in a cereal bowl and was tres manifique. 

Just look at the sizes of these deserts!
Then we went off to the Emirates Palace which is amazing and I have mention in a previous post.

This was taken during the day on a previous visit..we went at night this time and
it was lit up beautifully.
We bought tickets to see Joshua Bell and the Czech Philharmonic this winter and I've been looking forward to it for a while. 

The show was fantastic and we got to stroll around the grounds during intermission.

A great day and I've got one week of classes to go before a two week break and my trip to Prague.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

TESOL Arabia weekend

Had a great weekend in Dubai with friends from work.  We went up for the TESOL conference and job fair but also for the socializing, eating and shopping. 

The first night we ate at the hotel restuarant....excellent food and we got a great discount because one of our group got locked in a malfunctioning bathroom. 

Sharon, Liz, me and Stacy
The next day I attended a few speakers at the conference.  It was pretty much a waste of time as the prsesenters were unprofessionable and hopelessly outdated in their topics.  I heard the same thing from other attendees all day.  Apparently this is normal for this TESOL Arabia because of the pressure put upon teachers to present regardless of whether they have time or interest.   I did get a good grammar book at the book fair so it wasn't a complete waste of time and we ate at the revolving restaurant at the top of the hotel while enjoying the views of Dubai.

Another reason I attended was to see how the job fair works for next year when I'm looking for a job.  It's very bizzare.  The institutions that are hiring put up their job postings and applicants hand their 'paper' resumes to a collection desk.  Then applicants wait to see if institutes want to interview them and what time their interviews are.  There is no communication between the institue and applicant while this is being done so you just have to wait and be available the whole weekend.   I'm not looking forward to doing it next year but I guess it will be a learning experience.

On our last night, we went to a sheesha bar on the Dubai Creek and relaxed outdoors with the lights of the city twinkling accross the water. 

Rick, me, Jackie, Stacy, Tanya (Sharon is taking the photo)
Here is me with the sheesha pipes...you can smoke all kinds of flavored tobacco like apple, mint, strawberry and peach.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Dubai Literary Festival

Went up to Dubai last weekend with Patreshia and met Rick for a day at the Dubai Literary Festival.  It was being held at the Intercontinental Hotel right on the marina...beautiful boardwalk lined with restaurants and, I can't believe I'm going to say this, it was a little chilly with a breeze off the ocean. 

My first author of the day was Alan Dean Foster who is an extremely talented and prolific writer of sci-fi.  He also writes novelizations of sci-fi movies like Star Wars, Star Trek, Aliens and many more.  It was wonderful getting to listen to his views on good vs bad sci-fi.  I was impressed enough to download a couple more kindle versions of his books this week.

Then, Rick and I went to listen to Dan Rather talk about his new book.  He was just stopping by  Dubai on his way to Afganistan to do another story..at the age of 81.  Crazy!!!  His book was mostly about how CBS booted him out over his coverage of the Bush campaign.  He demonstrates how huge corporations are buying up news outlets and forcing them to censor themselves for the 'good of the corporation'.  Nothing new in my opinion but I guess it was interesting to hear it right from the horse's mouth. 


Rick and I enjoyed a nice lunch outside at M&S and chatted about the fate of the world...didn't solve much but the company was nice.