Yesterday marked the 40th anniversary of the founding of the U.A.E. I remember National Day particularly because it’s also the anniversary of my arrival here. Jet-lagged and disoriented, I remember getting caught up in the traffic jams along the Corniche in Abu Dhabi in 2008 as my cab inched its way forward as I went to meet my new colleagues at the Hiltonia Hotel for happy hour.
Emiratis are enormously proud of their country and that patriotism is reflected in the lights and flags set up throughout Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the days leading up to National Day. The creativity is really displayed on their cars. Screened posters of U.A.E. rulers, red, green and black bunting, stenciled 37, 38, 39 and now 40 displayed prominently. It’s truly “Pimp My Ride,” Emirati-style. Each year I’ve wondered who has the business that does all this. (And the people who then remove all the decorations.) I’ve yet to see a story done on decorators gearing up for this annual event. Maybe I’ll have to look into it next year.
If you snapped some cool pix of this year’s cars, please do send them on. I’d love to include them here.