06 December 2009

National Day

On Tuesday 2 Dec, the United Arab Emirates turned 38 years old. Celebrations are still going on.  Local custom: decorate cars like crazy, drive down to the Corniche and honk jubilantly.  Makes sense that cars would play such a big part in the celebration of a country that has made such huge progress because of oil.

Car decorations get pretty creative.  Below are some illustrative random samples.

Can you see the passenger? He's wearing a red-checkered ghutra (traditional head wear), as many of the local males normally do here.  Car says: "EMARATY" "UAE."  I have no idea where all these huge decals come from.  The UAE flag is red, white, green, and black. 

Hearts! Red, white, and green hearts.  A very common theme.  I'm not accustomed to seeing young Emirati men driving around with their cars plastered in hearts, but apparently love for the UAE runs very deep here.  I also saw flower shapes.

Lots of cars went all out.  I wish I had photos of them for you here.  Huge pictures of the Sheikh everywhere.  This one has the Sheikh, the UAE colored lik the flag, and some nice sand dunes.  Other common themes included giant teddy bears tied to car roofs, and people leaning out of car windows spraying silly string everywhere.

Of course, if everyone jumps in their car and drives to the same place, it creates a jovial traffic jam.  As Brian later remarked when we tried to find a cab home, "What is this?  National traffic day?"

In other news, Sherry and I grew a TON of basil.  Here's Sherry hiding in our basil patch before we harvested it to make pesto for Thanksgiving:

No comments: