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The UAE was never ready for me

When the ‘almost husband’ invited me to come and spend Christmas with him in the UAE I was ecstatic.

Firstly because I have never traveled abroad. I know right, 46, and never traveled internationally! But the main reason was that I would get to spend five whole weeks with him all by myself! No children no work pressure NOTHING! Just him and I basically on a honeymoon.nd believe me Dubai, is the best place to spend a honeymoon (trust us to do things the other way round). And we have never had that kind of time alone in all the ten years we have been together. So it was a first time and a very exciting one at that.

Read the preceding chapters.

The weeks leading up to the trip, were filled with nonstop excitement! Although I do believe I was the only one over the moon with excitement in our house. The girls were still rather upset that I was leaving them for both Christmas and New Year.

As a typical Virgo. I started preparing for this trip about a month in advance! I started packing and getting everything together at least two weeks before departure. Following my many “to do” lists that I had created.

Three nights before my departure everything was ready to go, bags weighed, meds packed into my check in luggage, (there are many banned substances in the UAE and anti-depressants is one of them) and not only that, but my carry-on luggage was also weighed, after all, Dhubai Trip 2 I had a two month supply. I mean I could have easily been mistaken for a drug mule!! I did thankfully have a letter from my Dr confirming my use of the medication, as a backup. So, I was ready to complete with my  ‘freshen up kit’, making sure I looked my best when seeing the ‘almost husband’ after what seemed like forever. Didn’t want to actually look like I’d just traveled 8 hours!!

As always something has to keep you on your toes!!!

My VISA was only approved two days before I was due to travel. So this little Virgo went into complete stress mode. What happens if it doesn’t come through, I wouldn’t get to see my man, it would also be a waste of a ticket blah blah blah….

The girls drove me to the airport, a little apprehensive and quite sad but happy for me. It’s always easier to leave than to be left behind. They were unhappy that it would be the first Christmas and New Year we would be apart.

I checked in my luggage, said tearful goodbyes to my precious girls. And headed into unknown territory. Passport control went off without a hitch, thankfully.

I managed to find a coffee shop/bar; amazes me that people drink at 9 am in the morning; to calm their nerves I’m sure, before flying. I stuck to coffee and a few smokes before flying, and started the long wait.

Time eventually came for boarding, I was both nervous but very excited.

However…… everything fell apart as I was walking down the ramp into the plane. I suddenly had the worst panic attack. I began to cry, shake and sweat. Realizing there was no way I could get into that ‘small’ confined space. The very sweet air hostess took me to one side and tried to calm me down. Nothing helped. Eventually she said to me, “Madam if we don’t get this under control, unfortunately you won’t be able to fly with us”. I said I had to fly, I was going to see my fiancé that I hadn’t seen for almost two months. Nothing helped…. Eventually they managed to get me into the plane and seat me in the area where the food and beverages are prepared. They gave me water and tried to calm me down. After a while I was calmer and they showed me to my seat. Bless the almost husband who booked me a window seat. That set me off all over again, the idea of me cramped between two Dhubai Trip 5other people scared the daylights out of me. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. At that point I honestly thought I wasn’t going to be able to fly. After a few minutes they managed to find me a seat in an isle with extra leg room. A very kind lady was willing to swop with me. The next thing an air hostess brought me a gin and tonic, saying “I think you probably need this”… I will just keep them coming through the flight…

Thankfully with the G&T flowing the flight went off without a hitch. After 8 hours we landed at Dubai airport. I was terrified. I didn’t know where to go (the airport is HUGE), how would I even find my luggage. Anyway, needless to say nothing happened and I finally found my way and was lead through the most efficient passport control I have ever been experienced. Once I was Dhubai Trip 4finished with passport control and duty free, the excitement really started to kick in; just a few minutes and I would be in the arms of my lover!! Or so I thought. I came through the doors all ready to greet him with a huge hug and a kiss, only for him to tell me, you may not display any affection in public in Dubai. So it was a simple kiss on the cheek and off we went. Dubai is very tolerant of Westerners, in fact they encourage them to visit the country, but as I later found out some things are just NOT tolerated.

We headed off to his “local” pub to have some drinks and dinner. And celebrate our reunion and our eminent holiday/honeymoon!

Stay tuned for more of my honeymoon shenanigans in Dubai.

This is a continuing bi-monthly series contributed by Joburg Gypsy.

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