More rain expected in the UAE in the next 48 hours

We received a circular at work today regarding weather warning for UAE residents. It seems that Saturday’s rain that left hundreds of people stranded on the road and a lot of flooding wasn’t all – to think the rainfall that single night must be equivalent to the whole year of rain in Dubai.

From the email:

From this evening onwards the weather will become unsettled with thunderstorms accompanied by heavy rain, strong gusty winds and the possibility of hail,” the met office said in its warning. “Winds may gust to 40 knots (75km/h) with poor visibility and flooding, making driving conditions difficult. This unsettled weather will persist throughout Tuesday.

Uhm, hello? Isn’t this desert land and not the tropical rainforests of Amazon and Southeast Asia! The people and moreover, the city isn’t capable of handling too much rain. No drainage on most parts, yes?

The circular continues:

All staff should be prepared for delays and make the necessary adjustments to ensure they get to work safely. Personnel who have planned long road journeys should reconsider their travel plans. It is better to delay visits and meetings than to spend hours in heavy traffic, while at the same time running the risk of being involved in an accident. Everyone should drive within their capabilities and anticipate and make allowances for poor driving habits on the part of others.

Aye. There were lots of those kind of driving habit on my way home yesterday. We live in the boundary of Dubai and Sharjah and the number of cars going to Sharjah were utilizing all the roads!

sharjah flood

Photo credit: Arshad Ali/Gulf News

Sharjah was underwater, with most roads going to Sharjah impassable (even a day after the rains), traffic on Dubai roads connecting to Sharjah were a standstill. It took me 1.5 hours to go home yesterday instead of 20 minutes.

Torrential rains in the desert!?

Looking at the blue skies and sun coming out today, last night seemed like a distant nightmare. It rained heavily, like those rains in the tropical rainforests of South-East Asia. We’re talking of buckets upon buckets of rain being poured all at once kind of thunderstorm.

rain_umbrella

Ok, no problem…would be relaxing even had we been home, safe and warm under our blankets. After all, I do love some rain.

Thing is, we weren’t home but we’re in a clinic to rush Pristine due to her complaints of pain in her right wrist and forearm. Her hands swelled and she developed fever. After an hour at the clinic, we were given clearance – it was nothing serious but a severe allergy triggered “possibly” by an insect bite (unknown insect). She is highly allergic to these kind of things that’s why I don’t do so many trips back to the Philippines with her.

Anyway, when we went out, there was thunder and lightning and big fat raindrops coming from the skies! We are not used to heavy rains here in Dubai and last night was out of this world. We waited and waited only to see the roads disappear as flood waters rose. We checked our car – half of the tires are submerged and the security at the parking lot has fled, locking the parking barrier.

We had no umbrella, no rain boots, no car.

At 10:30 pm, Pristine was so tired, sleepy, in pain and hungry. We braved the rain and walked to a hotel apartment beside the hospital building. Soaked and wet we asked for a room and thankfully, there was ONE left!

I ran a hot bath for Pristine and I, ordered room service food for her (what a life! she liked it) and jumped into bed while the rain still battered Dubai way past midnight. When I turned off the lights, it was so dark with the blackout curtains and Pristine said:

“Mom, I can’t see your face!”

I said it’s ok, it’s because of the curtains and told her to close her eyes.

“But I don’t want to close my eyes and sleep without seeing your face!”

Oh Lord, what drama. I turned on the head light she smiled, kissed me and we slept peacefully at last!

*****

Today, there’s news of severe flooding in Dubai and the next emirate of Sharjah with lots of roads being blocked and impassable. That said, the skies are getting dark again, I’ll run now before it rains again!!

(It’s 7 pm, I just finished my work and just have to write a blog post as we have no internet at home…2 weeks after we moved in!)

Sandstorm and good news for Dubai

We’ve been experiencing nasty sandstorms as of this writing today in Dubai. I went out to go to the gym during lunch break and amazed how fine sand found its way through my sunglasses to my eyes!  I felt the slap of sand in my cheeks, ouch not nice.

It’s also suddenly getting hot in here. Last night, we had 26C – what happened to “winter”? Already finished? I took out my winter jacket because I was shivering in 14C on my way home the night before. Tsk, tsk, tsk. This is what desert living does to people – make them shiver at 14C. Ridiculous stuff.

Anyway, sandstorms, gusty winds and sudden heat aside….we had some breaking news today.

Just in time to redeem Dubai of it’s debts and continue to fuel it’s big golden dreams, Sheikh Mohammed tweets, “there is a new oil discovery in Dubai.” It’s good news for the leaders and people of the UAE – nothing can be so timely (if it’s really true).

It’s raining, raining, raining

rain drops on window pane

There’s some kind of surreal thing going on with the weather we are experiencing right now in Dubai. It has been raining since yesterday! What a joy. We’ve been waiting for this kind of cool break, literally from the summer heat and kind of a change from the usual sunny-blue-skies weather we have 330 days a year. Forgive me, I do get the “don’t rub it in!” comment from people buried in winter snow but yeah, some gray clouds and rain do make me happy.

It’s quite nice to lie down in bed and looking out at the window to see the rain on a weekend. I spent half of my day off being sick – having a head splitting headache and vomitting. I rushed to the washroom so many times to throw up, creating commotion among the people in the house (namely: my mom, my aunt, my other aunt, etc) who came to visit. I came out and looked at their smiling faces.

“What?”

It’s really not funny for them to even think there’s a bun in the oven because it wasn’t even morning  and that there really wasn’t (I think so). Earlier that day, I took Pristine to a kid cinema at Ikea and I forgot to bring my eyeglasses. Shit happens when I go see a movie without my eyeglasses. That is all!

Fluffy clouds and no rain

Dubai clouds in the morning

We’ve been having really nice weather here lately. By nice, that would mean, something that would have to do with cooler temperatures and for me, clouds and rain. When I look into the skies every single morning, it always seems like it’s going to rain right that very moment but it just won’t. Dubai skies in winter are such big teasers.

Last Tuesday, the weather was just wild, with strong winds ready to wipe out all the thin people walking in the streets. Of course, my feet was firm on the ground. I’m not that fat – I just need a stronger wind to blow me off. Heh. It was a pain to walk in windy weather though – in case you’ve forgotten, this is desert land and sand can get into the eyes, nose, etc. It was definitely no lip gloss day.

Yesterday I took the bus to work and brought my 3rd The Twilight Saga book, Eclipse and read it inside the bus. I heard a whooshing sound when it neared my bus stop so I stopped imagining about Jacob’s body and looked outside.

road leading to abu baker street deira 2009.12.9 p

From the look of things, it’s apparent that it rained in the night or at dawn, probably lasting 5-10 minutes.

I’ve read some nasty weather in the US from Twitter. How’s the weather in your place?

*****

By the way, while you’re here do enter the current giveaway I’m having: a cute shirt for your little one from Lily and Pete is up for grabs. There are few entries so chance to win is big.

Dubai’s first rain of the season finally here

rain

Photo for illustration purposes only

Yesterday at Twitter, came a very surprising tweet: “It’s raining in Dubai!!” I rushed outside to see if indeed the first showers of the season has come but no, from where I was, it was dry.

But the tweets keep on coming. It has rained at an area near the Mall of the Emirates, in Al Barsha, etc. When the local news agency Gulf News finally tweeted that rain hits parts of Dubai and Sharjah, then it was confirmed.

I have a winner in my guess the rain competition! Congratulations to @Mita56 – who placed her bet via Twitter early this month. I told her I’d only accept her bet since she placed in on my birthdate (22nd). And she was right!

Right now, the skies are acting a bit strange, the air is cool and we might experience the elusive rain again. I hope next time it comes to my area so I can take photos of it. No floods, though, please.

*****

Thank you very much to everyone who took part in the rain competition. It was fun! Let’s do that again next year! Speaking of competitions, I have one giveaway tomorrow, watch out for that, especially moms with little kiddos.

Also, I’d like to say thanks so much to all who greeted me on my birthday. You all make me feel extra special.

When it rains it pours? When it’s gone, it’s gone

putting the pieces together

Photo credit: jetlears

Just a quick note, someone’s putting the pieces of the puzzle together to create a new theme for the blog so you might see something wonky or out of place (or not because the designer is cool and powerful. Hint: not me). If everything goes well, my blog will be wearing something new just in time for my birthday. My birthday is coming up in a few days and I thought, I don’t need a new dress or shoes but I do need a good blog design so I’ll be getting that wish soon. Watch out for it!

*****

M’s 5 year old Sony Vaio left us two days ago. It just sort of, DIED. Investigation and cause of death is still under investigation.

As if that wasn’t enough, my small HP notebook which we bought last June kind of died too. No we are not PC destroyers *don’t look at me like that!* – the HP one was already showing some signs of abnormality the moment we brought it from the store so there, wasn’t anyone’s fault. It’s under warranty so we have a chance to have it back working again.

As for the Vaio, I am just so, so glad I was able to transfer all my files to a portable hard disk drive before the catastrophic event. If not, I don’t know what would I do. I mean, I have photos of myself going through labor in that Vaio hard drive, along with other precious moment photos.  While my files are safe, my husband wasn’t lucky enough. Since he always says he’s busy, busy, busy to do backup…his files ditched him. I bet all of them are laughing in hell.

Sorry for the mention of “rain” in the title. No, rain is still elusive. We’re still bone dry here however, enjoying the cooler weather and blue skies. Luigi and Tammy betted it’ll rain today. Let’s see!

Still no rain

Sunset burj dubai

We’re halfway through November but still no rain here in desert land. Clouds are appearing early in the morning and in the afternoons but during midday, the skies are clear, blue and cloudless. We are still having maximum temperatures of 33C but with low humidity so it’s a great time to be outside, just don’t forget your sun cream.

Regarding the rain poll, if it won’t rain until the 29th, I’ll add December dates for everyone to place their bets again as to when Dubai’s going to have its first rain of the season. Last night, I dreamed that it did rain, so it must be near. 🙂

By the way, that tall spire-like thing piercing through the afternoon clouds is the Burj Dubai, standing at more than 800 meters above the ground.

*****

Thanks for everyone who left a comment regarding my toothache posts on this blog and on Twitter. I figured I’ll stop writing about dentists trips, root canals and crappy toothaches before I turn this into a toothache blog. To cut the story short, I went to a new dentist yesterday who diagnosed my problem differently. I still went through the dreaded root canal and though I was in terrible pain while on the dentist’s chair yesterday, this morning, I woke up pain free and feeling alive again. The days of being zoombie-like has ended.

Hair today, gone tomorrow and blue skies

Just how random can that title be. Coming up with a blog title kills me, every time.

So, have you casted your bets yet? Why not? Go guess when we’ll have our first rain of the season now. There are so many dates still available and nobody’s going to charge you for anything for the bets, I promise.

Anyway, just to give everyone an update about the weather and the temps here, it’s still warm at 29c at night:

still 29c at night

But living in the desert and surviving the 45C+ summer heat, 29C is cool. I don’t resent 29C, not at all.

Today, I went out during lunch break and at 1:30 pm here in Dubai the sky looked like this:

blue sky jet smoke

Aside from the smoke left by a passing jet, the sky is clear and so blue. That’s a heads-up so you’ll know it won’t rain in Dubai today – so don’t place your bet on November 3!

Just saying – I won’t be giving hints everyday. That won’t be exciting anymore.

*****

On the work front, I came back to office yesterday with people telling me I look fresh, rested and happy. Translating that, they are saying that I looked stale before I left and that I need 30 days straight off several times a year. Why else would they drop hints like that, right!?

Work is normal and not as stressful than I expected but my ears are exploding. How did I ever survive this very loud work place? Everyone’s shouting like either they’re all deaf or there’s a carnival going on that I don’t know of. It’s sad that the ears are involuntarily open like that and my husband is too stingy and won’t buy me earplugs. It’s so different than the offices in Japan where the only sound you can hear is that of the keyboard or your boss’s voice when someone screws up.

grace long hair

Oh and how they commented on my new short hair. Like, “Whoa, we didn’t notice you came in – you looked different!” or “new hair looks nice” and the classic from some of the ladies: “WHY did you cut your hair?” We all know that when someone inserts the word WHY in from of a question, most likely it means they don’t like it.

Or I look like a troll.

Oh well, this is my hair and I can do whatever I want with it. Gone are the days of mad blow drying, hair conditioning, masking, tying and combing. I won’t even have to spend so much time in the shower at the gym or come to work dripping after my lunch break workout. It’s liberating. And that small bottle of my favorite shampoo I brought from Japan? That little darling will last for THREE years.

Grace short hair

“Hello, I’m Grace and I like to take photos in the washroom”

Why the sudden self-exposure on the blog? Thank you for asking. The answer: I’ve had people not recognizing me when I meet them on the street (especially if I have my sunglasses on). So now you know how I look like – long hair gone, short hair it is. Say hi!

Place your bets on our first rain of the season!

Folksies, today I am back to work so I’ll try to be less sober while I sort out the piles of emails and paper work in front of me. By the time you’re reading this post, I’m in my desk suffering from double vision and painfully missing my daughter at home. Reality bites.

Anyway, just an update about the weather here now – Dubai’s a lot better than when I left for vacation. We still have highs of 33C but the humidity is fairly low and at night, it’s very comfortable and cooler. In the morning, I can see rolls of clouds (in the morning) that gets me excited.

November and clouds could mean one thing – RAIN! The last time it rained in Dubai was last March. So I thought while I get busy catching up with my work, why don’t we play a little game? I promise it’ll be fun!

When do you think we Dubaians will get our first drop of rain of the season?

rain Dubai

Last year, it was around mid-November but with the crazy weather and global warming caused climate changes, we’ll never know! Place your bets and win a prize! Exciting or what?

Here are the rules:

  1. Pick a date from tomorrow, 3rd November onto the 30th (I’m pretty sure it’ll rain before the end of this month so I didn’t include December)
  2. Leave a comment with your date of choice (your bet Dubai’s going to have the first rain of the season). If you leave your blog URL in the comment form, I’ll link to it.
  3. This post will be updated with the names of the commentors as they come in.
  4. You can pick any one date but I’ll open the bets to three people per day only. Once three people have picked a day, that day will be closed.
  5. When the skies open up and we get rain here, with the road getting wet – the road has to get wet so a 10 second drizzle isn’t counted, then I’ll announce the winner(s)! Naturally, once it rains, this contest will be closed.

I’ll include a news clip/article for evidence – rain in Dubai always land in the news so you’ll know this game is fair. 😉

The prize will be something Dubai-themed, I’m not going to reveal what it is yet so it’s a surprise! Now here are the dates, go!

  1. November 3 – No rain!! *CLOSED*
  2. November 4 – No rain!! *CLOSED*
  3. November 5 – CMC No rain!! *CLOSED*
  4. November 6 – Bing No rain!! *CLOSED*
  5. November 7 – Nicole No rain!! *CLOSED*
  6. November 8 – Janil No rain!! *CLOSED*
  7. November 9 – Krista No rain!! *CLOSED*
  8. November 10 – Elle No rain!! *CLOSED*
  9. November 11 – alohalmolly, Hollie No rain!! *CLOSED*
  10. November 12 – Robin No rain!! *CLOSED*
  11. November 13 – Maryam, Karry Knisley, Raelena *3 betters, CLOSED* No rain!! *CLOSED*
  12. November 14 – Over Thirty Mommy, Desai, NJ *CLOSED* * No rain!! *CLOSED*
  13. November 15 – Kaleido, Kristine Sorochinsky, Vishal *CLOSED* * No rain!! *CLOSED*
  14. November 16 – JuliaA, Kimberly * No rain!! *CLOSED*
  15. November 17 – Maribeth, Kayla * No rain!! *CLOSED*
  16. November 18 – Erica, Tanya, Dee *CLOSED* * No rain!! *CLOSED*
  17. November 19 – Luigi@Brochures, Tammy No rain!! *CLOSED*
  18. November 20 – Shruti Jagdeesh No rain!! *CLOSED*
  19. November 21 – Urban Thought, Nicki No rain!! *CLOSED*
  20. November 22 – Mita56 (bet submitted via Twitter) *It rained! it rained! Competition CLOSED *
  21. November 23 – JENNIE, Some Lucky Dog
  22. November 24 – Anton Deleon, Therabreath
  23. November 25 – willowsprite
  24. November 26 – Kate
  25. November 27 – Jingle
  26. November 28 – AB Smith, Tia
  27. November 29 – Cathy
  28. November 30 – Gloridel

Good luck and wish us rain!