First Days in Abu Dhabi

I arrived in Abu Dhabi on Sunday, May 27th.  I traveled to Toronto with Air Canada, then onwards with Rebecca’s new company, Etihad Airways.  I was very impressed with the service aboard the flight…they seem like a top notch outfit.  My flight was 45 minutes early so my driver was not there yet causing me a little anxiety, but he got there in due course.

I was taken to the Oryx Hotel in the Al Kalidiya district of Abu Dhabi.  I checked in and it did not take long to get to sleep.  The next morning, I was picked up at the hotel and taken to the company headquarters.  I filled out a lot of forms and submitted my passport for my residency visa application.  I was then taken to a huge medical centre for an exam which includes seeing a physician, giving blood, and a chest x-ray.  This is a requirement for everyone applying for a UAE residency visa.

The next day, I reported in for duty at the Irena Tower which is where I will be working.  I met the Vice President of Drilling, then my boss, the Drilling Engineering Manager.  I had met both of these guys in Trinidad during my interview.  The rest of the team seems like a bunch of good people.  I will be working with people from all over the world and they all strike me as very knowledgeable and true professionals.  On Thursday, I attended the company medical with much of the same poking and prodding plus an ECG, and hearing and vision tests.  The first weekend I had was used to catch up on the lost sleep a 10 hour jet lag will give you.  On Friday, I ventured out to check out a bit of the city.

Back in February, Rebecca discovered that Madonna was set to play a show in Abu Dhabi on June 3rd.  We bought tickets thinking that we would be here by then.  Unfortunately, I was here, but Rebecca was not.  During breakfast at the hotel, one of other the new hires from Venezuela was talking about how much he wanted to see Madonna and how he couldn’t find tickets so I offered him Rebecca’s ticket.  So, on Sunday night, Heriberto and I caught a cab up to Yas Island to see the show.  Some of you may remember that Yas Island is where Rebecca and I stayed back in December.  Rebecca had splurged and got us tickets near the stage and I must say the show was awesome.  Madonna has still got it.  I’ve put a link to the Gulf News website to an article describing the show.  It’s pretty interesting to note that the UAE has never seen a public display of eroticism, sex, and violence that we a know Madonna is so capable of.

Madonna’s MDNA Worl Tour

Dan in a sea of humanity at 40C

This past week has been good and I’ve been assigned a major project to work on at work.  I received my residency visa today which will help Rebecca and I move forward with settling in (bank account, accommodation, phone plans, etc).  The other good news I received is that Rebecca will be taking off from Calgary for Abu Dhabi in about 3 hours from now.  I am looking so forward to having her here so that we can make some big decisions and start our new adventure together.

Sorry for the lack of pics this time…no camera with me.  I got a few from my amigo, but I lost track of him after he headed for a bathroom break at the concert near the start of the show.  He couldn’t make his way back to the standing room only position I had and his pictures weren’t good from where he was.

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