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From One Louvre To The Other Louvre…

I remember the curving, infernal queue of visitors waiting to go into the Louvre museum in Paris and still regret my impatience to date. The plan to go back the following day never quite panned out and that was how I missed the opportunity to feed my eyes with all the priceless art pieces kept there.

With the opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi, I wasn’t going to miss out on the chance to visit this museum and the latest addition to places to visit in the UAE. I can assure you, it was well worth the 2 and half hours of leisurely drive from Dubai.

There was equally a curving queue – but not like the unending queue in Paris. We waited patiently to purchase our tickets before we could roam freely to feed our soul through our eyes. As usual, I took loads of photos – that I’m yet to curate.

The awe-inspiring structure had 23 galleries of treasures spanning different eras in history. Each gallery would take about 30 to 45 minutes depending on how long you wish to stare at Alexander The Greats torso 😉

The hours flew past so fast and by the time we were ready to leave, it was closing time. I daresay if they had left me in there until the following day – with food and duvet hopefully – I wouldn’t have complained.

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Quick Tips For Museum Visits

  1. Take a guided tour – if you can afford one. The guide explains the artworks, its backgrounds and significance. It can be quite informative and enlightening.
  2. Follow the numbers. Follow the unique numbers of each gallery. This way you know where you have been and eliminate the chances of roaming around in circles.
  3. Wear something warm or carry a cloak just in case. Museums can get pretty cold inside because they are set at relatively cooler temperatures to protect the artefacts and after spending several hours in a cold one, it gets quite chilly.
  4. Wear comfortable shoes. Wearing comfortable footwear ensures that you enjoy the experience without hobbling and howling.
  5. Turn Off Your Flash! For sure taking photos for your Instagram and all the social networks you are on is great – otherwise, how will anyone know you went there – but do remember that these great works of art that have lived for thousands of years for you to admire, need to be preserved for other generations.
  6. Be mindful of others and keep your voice level low. For some people, visiting the museum is almost a spiritual and calming thing. They don’t want their experience to be marred by the uncouth rowdy behaviour of others.
  7. Prepare to be hungry and thirsty. All that walking around with oohing and aahing certainly increases your appetite. Pack something that you can eat in the café or grab a quick bite in the mmuseums’café.
  8. Take your time and soak it all in.
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Random Echoes of My Neighbourhood

Many weeks have gone by and I’ve not shared a post on Echoes of my neighbourhood. I miss doing so and blame it on the infernal heat in this place.

I have barely taken decent photos in the past weeks due to efforts to avoid heat stroke, melting into a puddle and baking in the sun.

I am one of those waiting for Autumns’ gate to open so I can dash out and play in nature. These past weeks have been from air-conditioned house to air-conditioned car, to air-conditioned locations and it’s getting a bit old for me.

So, I’m just going to stick some random shots taken here and there.

School Apparel, Bags, Children, Academics

 

We are getting ready to go back to school next week.

Father and Son, Smiling, Happy

 

At the aquarium. I love this photo. Their smile made me smile 🙂

School of fish, aquarium, sea life

I wonder if the school of fish is going back to school as well? Ha, ha! I couldn’t resist that pun.

 

Happy Dance, Hershey's

I guess when you eat the Hershey’s you feel sweet enough to dance the happy dance.

 

Fashion, Summer sales, clothing

Summer clearance sales at every nook and cranny to make way for Winter wear.

 

 

The Dying One’s – Echoes of My Neighbourhood

It simply has to be the searing heat, ‘cos I’ve seen far too many dead birds this past couple of weeks. The poor things.

When I look at them, they always seem to have their feathers ruffled out of place and their beaks open in an attempt to get more air – my thoughts.

However, I preferred not to take depressing photos of the dead birds but sharing bits and pieces of my week. No one can convince me that the Earth is not gradually over heating.

Pamela took us to Jax beach and I must say that I’m a tad envious of those enjoying a good-natured weather at their end right now.

Lady Tee shared some delicious slices of her world with us.

So, how’s your end holding up?

 

Hibernating in the malls – Echoes of my neighbourhood

Our Summer days over here are not filled with barbecues and frolicking at the pool side. It’s steaming hot, that staying outside for longer than is required is asking for heat stroke. If the idea of leaving your side of ribs on the sidewalk to sizzle and grill appeals to you, then by all means indulge and yes it’s possible, I’ve eaten sand-baked lamb and the gentle roast is flavourful.

So, these days with children on vacation and going cabin crazy, most malls are flooded with folks and families seeking momentary respite while we wait with bated breath for the cooler months of Autumn and Winter for our days by the poolside and other wonderful indulgences. For now, we turn into night bats and recreate as the weather permits.

Echoes of Sacraments, Iftar, This and That

In recent weeks echoes around my neighbourhood have been on the calm and reflective sided.

From my children receiving their Sacraments of Holy Communion and Confirmation, to The Ramadan season, it’s been a time of spiritual inflections. It has been a time of expressions of love, kindness, and generosity that cuts across boundaries of faith or ethnicity. I see people of all works of life come together in ways that make my heart full and appreciative of humanity.

Interestingly, my personal life hasn’t gotten any slower though the tempo around the region is slower and the blazing heat is intense.

 

Etihad – Echoes of My Neighbourhood

Roughly translated, Etihad means ‘together, join into one,’ and that’s what the UAE is all about. The United Arab Emirates is made up of 7 Emirates that came to become one Federation, yet each Emirate is autonomous.

The enormous, extraordinary development this region has experienced can only be better appreciated when you see the stark, arid, unforgiving surroundings that it was carved out of.

My foray last week took me to Etihad museum. The museum is located on the same historical site of the Union House, which is where the constitution of the UAE was signed in 1971 to establish its independence.

Etihad is equipped with a library, an education centre, exhibition halls, restaurant/cafe. It offers a series of interactive pavilions, photos, films and more, where visitors can explore the UAE’s history with particular emphasis on the significant period between 1968 and 1974 – through photos, films and more.

It’s always my wish to develop better understanding and appreciation of where ever I am, which is why I haunt museums. Doing so gives one a glimpse into the history and heritage of their surrounding and allows you to see the place through different eyes.

Beautiful photos of fresh snow from Lady Lee’s neighbourhood.

On another hand, after much deliberation, Echoes of my neighbourhood will be evolving a bit. It has run consistently every week for well over a year and I am honestly surprised that I kept up with it. Sometimes, we don’t know how far we can go unless we start.

Going forward, it will evolve into a monthly feature on this blog and no longer weekly. The last Thursday of each month will offer a collage of photographs and post for Echoes. I am in the process of aligning my projects and other interests to create better balance.

You are most welcome to join Echoes of my neighbourhood – last Thursday’s of the month.

 

Camel Craziness: Al Marmoom Heritage – Echoes of My Neighbourhood

I’ve not seen such number of Camels gathered in one place all my life. Certain things are better witnessed to appreciate them and the Dromedary (Arabian) Camel racing at the just concluded Al Marmoom Heritage Festival is one of those things.

The Festival celebrates a most valued beast of burden (in these parts) with more than a week of thrilling camel races and cultural exhibitions.

We managed to attend on one of the days and the excitement of spectators was simply contagious. Nothing prepared me for the prospect of seeing fleets and fleets of gangly dromedaries in full flight carrying their robotic jockeys on their humps while their robot handlers/trainers raced along beside them in their 4 x 4 SUV’s.

The camels’ hail from all across the Middle East. They are the stars of the show and they compete in various heats during the day, over a 12-day period. Believe me, it’s an exhilarating one-of-a-kind camel-crazy jamboree!

I even got a generous offer of 50 camels as dowry for my old hands from an interesting fellow with tobacco stained teeth. Quite an experience 😉

Have you visited charming Bamberg? Lady Lee sure knows how to take a trip. You can take a vicarious trip online with her 🙂

I would like to offer the free use of any of my photographs that interest you.

Should at any time you wish to use my images, please feel free to give me a nudge and I’ll email it to you free from any image credit attributions.