On our first evening in Dubai we decided to go for dinner on a traditional Dhow cruise, so we arrived on the bank of the man made canal after making a booking on an unknown boat and were greeted by hundreds (and I literally mean hundreds) of wooden boats (dhows) lit up like Christmas trees. It was a spectacular sight with one problem - which one was ours?
After a couple of harried, confusing calls (I only heard one side) and a bit of a mission up the canal we were now looking for a boat called Duty next to the Star of something or other. We found the boat the Star of something or other but not Duty. Then we realised it was GT not Duty. Well that is what we surmised since it happened to be next to the Star of something or other. We did surmise correctly so without further ado we boarded the two story, well lit Dhow and were led below deck to enjoy our pre-trip juice.
We were only due to leave 8:30pm so we were sitting chatting, doing the touristy photo thing when they cranked up the music. Out poured Britney Spears - The Ballads. The men in our party (and most of the women to be fair) looked around in abject horror wondering if they had time to abandon ship before we left for our dinner trip. I must admit that after the Britney faded away and the Celine Dion ballads took over I wanted to join them! I think it would have been okay if it had been background noise, but it wasn’t! And it didn’t stop.
After awhile we eventually left and after watching a whole set of near misses as the other 99 Dhow boats left their little docking stations (a little like bumper cars, fortunately no-one collided, near misses aside). As we anchors awayed the food was served and it was surprisingly good! Really yummy some kind of veggie soup followed by a buffet that featured an amazing veggie curry and a whole host of unidentifiable desserts (I tried all of them and I am seriously okay not finding out what they are), well apart from the fruit salad.
While we were busy digesting and watching the other brightly lit boats passing us and the bits of scenery we could see on the banks the entertainment for the evening started setting up. It was a magician (and we were now being serenaded by discordant Christmas carols). I must say, the magicians one saving grace was he turned the music down. Shame he actually wasn’t a bad magician cutting ropes and rejoining them, making things disappear, substances change and levitating tables but he had no stage presence at all. Poor guy!
Our little magician wrapped up his show as we finished our cruise. I’m not going to lie, we all upped and bolted as soon as the plank was down. Unfortunately everyone else had the same idea so we were stuck in a little queue, moving out in single file with a song about sexy Tarzan and a whole lot of Janes playing in the (loud) background. It sounded like it was sung by chipmunks. It was all I could do to not collapse in absolute hysterics! Once we were off the boat we indulged our hysterics, I have to say it was actually a very entertaining evening!