13 years in Dubai

I almost forgot that today marks my Dubai Anniversary…13 years, WOW!

I must thank Facebook for reminding me!

I still remember that day like it was yesterday…I accepted a job in a land that I knew nothing about, and I wasn’t scared. I was excited. Because it would have been my first time living alone and at that time, that was all that mattered: FREEDOM.

I recall that I didn’t feel I was in Dubai until the next day when I started my first day at work in Grand Hyatt Dubai and as part of the orientation, they took as around the city and we finally made it to Burj Al Arab…that is when I realized: ok, I am in Dubai!

I think we are so privileged to live in a city that is ever-growing, developing month after month under our eyes. When I arrived in Dubai in 2007, it was such a different city from what it is now: JLT was under construction, the Palm was just an outline of sand, Dubai Mall wasn’t even there, neither Burj Khalifa, JBR was an open beach with no facilities, and so on. It amazes me every day how this city has managed to bloom to what it is today.

Dubai is now home as home is where the heart is. Everything that matters to me the most is here: family, friends, work. I couldn’t think of living anywhere else. I am so grateful for the opportunities that this city has given me: a career I would have never dreamed of, a freedom I never thought possible, the ability to save and look after myself and my family living a comfortable lifestyle, the privilege of feeling like I am on vacation everyday with a pool and beach at my doorsteps, the chance to interact daily with the diverse community of people from all around the world that make Dubai the biggest melting pot there is.

Though this year has been a tough one, I know Dubai and its inhabitants are resilient. They won’t give up and they will push through these hard times and come out victorious.

The vision that this country has for the future is one of progress, innovation, equality, opportunity, growth, vision. And I can’t wait to be part of it, as a spectator and contributor.

Thank you Dubai, Happy 13th Anniversary to us!

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