The humidity would’ve killed a lesser man

I was in Dubai two weeks ago, attending a conference.  For those of you who are geographically challenged, Dubai is a bright lights, big city in the desert. For those of you who are climatically challenged, September is the start of autumn for the residents of this massive outdoor sauna and the change of season means they change their description of the heat from “hof AF” to “hot as hell”.  The problem is that Dubai is on the coast, so for non-residents the heat remains best described as “hot AF.”  The humidity is a killer.

I almost died, every time I had to walk from the hotel lobby to the conference facility.  One would think that a conference facility would be inside the hotel but no. One had to go outside and walk like 50 meters or so.  And I’m not exaggerating about evading the sickle of the Grim Reaper because attending a conference in Dubai implies having to wear a suit.  It seems that businessmen over there like to dress up for death.

The humidity was so severe, it took on a personality of its own.  It went beyond the normal call of duty with regards to the creation of moisture on the human body.  It attacked and reached most of my intimate places. The temperature of the pool is exactly the same whether you’re in or out.  And could someone please warn the unsuspecting guests of the depth of the pool.  It must have been 73 feet, and when I jumped in, I almost drowned and because I knew the lifeguard didn’t look anything like the cast of Baywatch, I managed to stay afloat by sheer willpower alone.

My closest call with crossing to the other side was when I reached the point of fedup-ness and thought screw this, I want a glass of wine whilst watching the Arab sun set from a different spot than my hotel room window. I ventured into the heat on route to a cozy bar just off the coast.  And in the words of Julia Roberts in that scene from Pretty Woman: “Big mistake. Huge.”  Humidity saw me coming, lurking in the shade, waiting patiently to strike when I would least expect it.

I took the golf cart taxi service offered by the hotel because I’m lazy and it’s free.  I got to the bar, happy to have spend five minutes in moving air created by the not-so-fast-as-I-would-have-liked-it-to-be golf cart.  I smiled at the bouncer who looked frighteningly cool and huge.  He did signal me to sit inside but being the brutish, stubborn person I am, I scoffed at his feeble attempt of luxury and opted to sit outside.  I attacked the stairs and embraced the vibe that didn’t exist at the top of the bar.  And this is where humidity was waiting.

I ordered the wine which took a few seconds longer that it normally would because I was hunched over, trying to catch my breath, after taking the stairs.  The bartender looked a bit freaked out, like he was serving the Joker or someone who is about to die of a heart attack.  I ignored his expression because I couldn’t make out if it was admiration or serious concern.

I took my spot and smiled at the setting sun.  I took a beautiful photo and sipped my Cabernet.  It was good.  Until it wasn’t anymore.  Nineteen seconds later.  When I started to sweat.  And not in a sexy way.  In a WTF, where does all this water come from, kind of way.  Within seven minutes I looked like the victim of a ice-bucket challenge prank.  Or at least I was praying for an ice-bucket challenge prank.  The setting sun was relentless, fighting the last few minutes of the inevitable.  It simply got too hot.  I got too hot.  The wine got too hot.  And humidity was rolling on the floor laughing.  I cursed it and left the wine and the bar and a bouncer with a condescending smirk on his face.

I swear, if I wasn’t so hot and humid, I would have punched him in his sweat-less throat.

As luck would have it, there was no golf-cart at the moment when I needed it desperately. I had to wait, for what seemed like an eternity, even if the long arm of my watch only moved twice.  At long last my hero arrived.

sweat

Me, only worse.

By this time I looked like a survivor of a sunken vessel, drowning in my own bodily fluid. Dehydrated and red, which is a great look on any middle aged man by the way, I was tempted to kiss the driver.  Yes ladies, don’t fight, just form a queue…

I rushed back into the hotel praying that no-one else would be in the elevator and fortunately for me, it was packed with one big family.  The father’s protective instinct kicked in, as he was slowly ushering his children away from the deranged, big, wet, red freak of a human.  I almost broke down my door, got naked and fell on the bed, spreading my body like a star (maybe this is too much information) underneath the best invention of the last four centuries, the AIRCONDITIONER.  It deserves all my respect, hence writing it in capital letters from here on forth.

Needless to say, I didn’t leave the safety of the hotel for the rest of the evening.

Advertisements

What to do at an airport without a laptop

In the wake of the astonishingly and somewhat surprising revelation that the US, and it’s little brother the UK, has imposed a ban on travelers who want to carry laptops, tablets, camera’s, vibrators, vacuum cleaners, boom boxes and other big electronic equipment on a plane, I instinctively knew I had to assist my fellow travelers.  Especially those who travel on one of the eight airlines listed.  Fortunately the Southern tip of Africa is as yet still protected from the wrath of the Oompa Loompa King.

I immediately rushed to the closest phone booth and changed into my alter ego, Mister Know-It-All.  I was ready to fly off, faster than a speeding bullet and provide all my loyal followers with insight into handling this precarious position because no-one likes to leave their electronic partners at home.

So I’ve taken the liberty of listing a few things a person can do at an airport whilst waiting, without the luxury of having a laptop around. Continue reading

Three nights in Bangkok.

2016-12-08-00-13-28

In the past I would arrive in a new city, drop my luggage and go and explore.  Those were the days…of my youth.

Now I’m basically too exhausted to do anything.  It’s mainly due to delayed flights, many hours in transit, long hours in a cab, age, disturbingly long queues through customs and me not being able to sleep through any of it. (Did I say age?)  In summary, it took my almost 32 hours to get from my house to the hotel in Bangkok. And I had a function to attend.  I’m not complaining, it’s business after all… Continue reading

A status report.

I’ve been dead tired for the most part. I’m blaming jetlag. But this time it’s been really bad. It’s the kind of exhaustion that make me believe that the zombie virus could actually exist. I conducted a meeting and drove myself to the airport without actually being aware of me doing it. I think, I passed out on the plane from Brisbane because I missed the meal service. Well, it’s not really a meal service, it’s more like a snack bar.

I was sitting next to a newly married couple and I know this because of the way she made me watch her wedding photos on her iPhone.  And there was a lot of touching and smiling and looking happy.  It was totally inappropriate and I reckon newly weds should have a separate section on a plane. She begged the question and I asked. They were on their honeymoon. Do you now understand the kind of shit I have to deal with when I travel internationally? Continue reading

I’m down under

Where they love sheep, beer and winning against South Africa. I’m kidding…they never win against South Africa…

(And that caused a minor explosion.)

I’m in Sydney at the moment where a group of guys are shouting at one another in a friendly manner. They must all be deaf, or just have a dark desire to inform random strangers about their weekend. Or maybe they’re just drunk. We all know there is a direct correlation between the amount of alcohol and the volume of your voice.

I’m staying in Coogee beach and please don’t get me started on some of the names they give places down here.. Continue reading

Laugh with me #48

I know this is cheating but I’ve been busy.  With work.  Hahahahaha.  I kill me.

I’ve actually been happily tweeting for the last few days and discovered a whole new way of wasting time. I promise, I am working on a decent post for you.

Seeing that I’m sitting at an airport, again, this guy reminds me of me when I travel.  Not so much the falling but the excessive luggage begging for a disaster to happen.

tumblr_ndr9lvggbm1u0r39ho1_400

And due to some constraints on certain airlines, I’m also not allowed to take a cooler with me.

Asta la vista babies!!

I almost got arrested for watching another man pee

I was in Brazil a couple of weeks ago and it wasn’t for the Olympic Games because doing nothing is not an Olympic event.  Yet.  I would qualify on the first try.  Probably end up with silver.

My colleague and I were attempting to return to the airport after the shortest time any two persons have ever spend in Sao Paulo.  The distance was a mere 25 km.  It took us about 1 hour and 47 minutes to cover half of it.  Then I stopped counting.  And it wasn’t just because of the traffic.

P wasn’t very talkative after the first half hour.  It’s nothing strange because men don’t speak as much as some other lovely creatures on the planet.  We actually appreciate moments of silence and they never become uncomfortable.  But this time he was kind of uncomfortable.  (Let’s call “he” P, shall we?)  I couldn’t really figure out why, until he asked the taxi driver to find a service station so he could relief himself.  It suddenly became very clear.  We’ve all been there, having an urgent, unplanned need to pee. Continue reading