The One Where I Went to Places and Dubai

Well, summer is over, and things have slowed down enough to actually process what happened during the summer. I certainly crammed a lot into it. I went from Xuzhou, Jiangsu, China to Beijing, to the UAE, to Oman, to Qatar, and back. What a run it was. I have tried to write this entry before, but I get around 10 pages into it, and feel it is too much for a single entry. I will probably do a more detailed post about a few things afterwards, but I will feel better after I get the first one done.

July 5: Left Xuzhou for Beijing on the Fast Train. 300+kph. In Beijing I spent 3 weeks at a summer camp. I got to see the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Real Blue Sky, and met some cool people there.

 

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After Beijing I hopped a flight to Dubai, UAE for a month. There I visited with my mother, who is there for work. My brother, sister, and nephew popped in for a 2 week visit. It was a good time having this trip with them. I’ll be honest, I didn’t ever expect to meet up with my sister outside of North America, maybe western Europe. I would say the same for my brother. It doesn’t surprise me with my mother.

Before my brother and sister arrived, mom and I took an overnight road trip to Oman: Dubai-Muscat-Nizwa (running around the mountains there)-Dubai. If you had told me 15 years ago, “Shawn, one day you’re gonna be driving around on your own in the Middle East,” I wouldn’t have even understood how it would ever happen. Now it feels normal. Funny how life changes along the way. Funny, but cool.

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The Robert and Becky came with James. The highlights of their time there were:
Al Ain: Zoo, Wadi Adventure (White Water Rafting, Zipline, Climbing Area)
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Dubai: The Palm Fairmont Hotel, Atlantis Aquarium, Desert Safari

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Abu Dhabi: The Fairmont, and The Grand Mosque, and Ferrari World

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After my brother, sister, and nephew went back to Canada mom and I took a day trip to Qatar. We flew out at 8:45 in the morning, and back at 9:30 or so in the evening. We rented a car, and took a drive out to the Al Zubarah Fort, it’s a UNESCO world heritage site. Went to the old bazaar, and got a cop mad at me because the roundabout was no longer a roundabout (should have put up a sign))). I won’t make that mistake there again.

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4,450kms later in the UAE/Oman, and 350kms in Qatar my time for travel came to an end. After all was said and done, it was time to come home to China. Classes have begun, and I miss summer. Oh well, a 5 week winter break is quickly approaching, then I will be Hong Kong/Macau bound.

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