The heat of Dubai landed on me right as I marched through the airplane door into the long, non-airconditioned tube that leads to the airport. Immediately, as I inhaled the stuffy, slightly polluted air I realized that I, wearing long trousers and a woolen shirt, would be in trouble here. Only time I’ve been in Dubai before was in the wintertime, which was still very warm, but this September heat, this is something different.
Covid does change the travel, not just by the amount of it, but also by the general tension of the travel. Before, you were treated approximately very well throughout the whole experience; now, the tables have turned. Starting from booking the flights, everything has become more strict, tense and panicky.
Travelers are clearly more annoyed: now they have to wear the masks. What’s even worse, they have to sit still in the airplane and wait to be asked to disembark. This seems to be the hardest part of the whole Corona prevention measures to some. I’ve never really understood why people spring up the moment the plane is empty, causing huge chaos and delays taking their bags and pushing to leave the plane first. Zero things are achieved that way. And now, when the flight attendants require you to sit down until your row is called, they take it as a personal insult.
I’m all for it. Getting off the plane is much faster, more organized and you don’t have to stand there like an idiot for ten minutes, spine bent into a sideways S-curve, being pushed around like a bag of potatoes.
At the hotel, I found out that my reservation had been cancelled at the last minute. The staff was helpful but apologetic: it seemed to have been an anti-fraud measure, given that the reservation was made for such a long time in such a far-away place, so I had to settle that with the production company, but it really took no longer than 10 minutes and I was in my big, air-conditioned and comfortable room.
First day here in Dubai was pretty much worth nothing, work-wise, I spent it mostly by sleeping and only braving the great (hot) outdoors twice: once to fetch some lunch, second time for dinner. The highlight of the evening was having a long chat with my wife over Whatsapp and complimentary wine from the hotel bar. Looking forward soaking more in of the town, starting tomorrow.