Stormy Beginnings.

In Russia, we say that the way you will spend the New Year’s night will be the way that you spend your whole year so you should weigh your options wisely before deciding on your plans.

The 1st of January 2021 I spent running from one dune to another in the Dubai desert, trying to see the fireworks (you can’t see the downtown fireworks from there), but this year we had our own fireworks, so I didn’t have to run across the dunes. We also had rain, wind, and quite some interesting weather phenomena.

I woke up on the 31st of December thinking that the war broke out due to some explosions were going on outside, but thankfully it turned out to be just a storm. I spent my morning preparing the Russian traditional “New Year” salad for some reason called Olivier, when the skies broke out again and it started pouring buckets not only outside, but also inside my apartment due to poor window isolation. Nothing new under the sun, so a few vessels catching water were placed here and there, and I moved on with my day. The rain has seemingly stopped, just like it always does in Dubai after a few hours.

We had a huge barbecue plan for later on in the desert and nothing could stop us from going out there and seizing the night. The other plan would be to watch a movie at home, and go to sleep, I guess since there is no way I would give my money to overpriced Dubai venues to watch a glimpse of fireworks and eat bland food served by depressed waiters, to only later be stuck in traffic without any chance to escape until early hours. Hell yeah, we wanted to go to the desert and be wild, free and surrounded by all kinds of misfitting strangers willing to share this bad idea of a New Year’s Night.

So we did. Keeping in mind that by morning there might be a light drizzle of 4mm of rain according to the weather forecast, but so what, are we made of sugar? No, so not gonna melt from the light drizzle.

We ate, we partied, we had a lady from the French city of Lille playing us some tunes on the trumpet, we watched fireworks, received gifts, shared the Christmas sweaters joy, listened to some dreaded Christmas music, sat around the fire, told stories of the past year, got cold, got warm, got smoked by the fire, finally got to go to sleep. However, not all of us, so I had to try to sleep with people still being loud and playing questionable music.

Then the flashes started in the skies, no, not the fireworks, the thunderstorm. The storm of all the storms, so before it was too late, the sleeping bags, the cushions and ourselves got transferred into the car, where we spent the next 4 hours looking at the flashes of lightning hitting trees and Etisalat poles around us. Luckily avoiding us… at 8 am the wind picked up so much that someone’s tent literally was one with our car, and our tent though still standing tall had collected about 10 cm of water on its floor. It had been decided that enough was enough and it was the time to get the hell out of here before all of this shit would fly off to Fujairah. I have no clue how some people managed to sleep in their tents being battered by this weather, and it was rather hard to wake some of them up, certain individuals were even required to have a glass of water (on top of all the rest of the water that kept battering us from every side) being thrown at them. But eventually, we managed, somehow we succeeded to take down the tents and gazebos, fit these poor drenched things into the car and get the heck out only to find flooded roads and broken road signs all over the city on the way back.

I don’t know how my coming 2022 is going to be, I only hope for now that it will stop raining some time soon, that none of us got Covid or pneumonia due to spending 4 hours under the lashing rain. I wish everyone to be safe and healthy. But on a positive note, just have a look at this fabulous last sunset of 2021. It was a magical moment full of promises. And yes, I wanted an adventure and I totally received one, thank you very much.

Take care, stay safe

And see you in 2022.

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