Friday Morning at the Park

In most Muslim countries the work week runs from Sunday to Thursday, which makes the weekend Friday-Saturday.  To be honest, this has been one of the hardest things to adjust to living here.  In my mind the work week starts on Monday, so even though it starts on Sunday here, my brain tells me it's Monday. Therefore my head is a day off all week long. (Your's might be too after trying to make sense of those last few sentences!)  I know, it's something I should be adjusted to after living here for 2+ years, but you wouldn't believe how strange it is!  This weekend happened to be a long one though so the work week is starting on Monday, which I'm sure will confuse me even more in the long run, sigh!

Friday is also the holy day here.  More than anything else, that means that the busy streets are often quiet for the majority of the day since everyone is at home with their families or going to mosque or church.  For us, it's our favorite time to get out since we know there won't be traffic, and far fewer crazy drivers on the roads.

For Bryn and I, most lazy Fridays start at a coffee shop.  Last Friday we decided to go to my favorite coffee shop in Al Ain, the Starbucks in Jahili Park.  

It's a Starbucks, so it's really nothing special, but you know what your gonna get and it's pretty fool proof when it comes to a decent cup of coffee.  The Jahili Park shop has rooftop seating, which gives you a beautiful view over the green park and is the ideal place to watch people try to navigate the drive through in their over-sized, super fancy cars.  It's gotten a bit too hot it sit outside though (I'm talking well over 40C/104F!) so we stayed indoors this particular morning.

After our coffees and pastries, we took a wander through Jahili Park.  It's a really nice area right in the middle of the city.  Perhaps the nicest part about it is the greenness of it!  Living in the desert I find that I really miss green grass and trees, so it's lovely to have areas of the city where you can feel like you aren't in the middle of the desert!  Right now there are all sorts of blooming trees and flowers in the park.  They aren't cherry blossoms, but they are so pretty nonetheless!

Jahili Fort sits on one side of the park.  We didn't go in on this visit, but there is a post about another visit here.

There's also a new exhibit at the park...a rock exhibit.  It is honestly the most random and confusing thing.  There is one sign in Arabic, and a pavilion with rocks of different shapes and sizes.  It's baffling - no explanations whatsoever!  I guess they are important rocks and may be very interesting to a geologist, but Bryn and I are certainly not geologists! We took a look anyways and were both scared to death by the security guard sitting in a corner...I guess someone has to protect those rocks.

Eventually it got too hot to be out in the sun (well, too hot unless you are sitting by a swimming pool with a drink in hand) so we said goodbye to the park and went on our way.

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