Saturday, 24 March 2018

Back in the UAE!

I arrived back in Abu Dhabi just before midnight on 6th March. Elated but a little tired! Didn't do much for the next few days, apart from going to The Club & watching rugby. It was nice to catch up with friends though.

The front wood

Enjoyed a morning visit to Mushrif Palace Gardens on 15th March. It was great to be walking around one of my major old birding haunts again. The weather was perfect, but the birding a little slow:

Oriental Honey Buzzard



There are now several pairs breeding in the city.

Alexandrine Parakeet

Oriental Honey Buzzard 1; Shikra, (a nice adult male); Hoopoe 3; European Tree Pipit 1; 2 Pied Wheatear; 4 Common Redstart; 8 Eastern Olivaceous Warbler; 7 Desert Lesser Whitethroat; 8 Chiffchaff; Menetries Warbler 1 & Daurian Shrike. Perhaps the best record was a Pale Crag Martin over the helipad.

Abu Dhabi Racecourse: a green oasis,
 amid the desert

European Tree Pipit

Pied Wheatear

Isabelline Wheatear

The nearby Abu Dhabi Racecourse held 1 Great Cormorant ; 1 Little Grebe; Eurasian Curlew 1; 2 Common Sandpiper; 2 Indian Roller; 7 Pied Wheatear; 3 Isabelline Wheatear; 3 Northern Wheatear & a lone Desert Wheatear; 3 European Tree Pipit; 1 Flava Wagtail & 3 Daurian Shrike.

Angie & me

Spent the evening with Angela at The Club. She is emigrating to Australia very soon & so the evening was tinged with sadness as I might not see her for a while. But she has a whole new life to look forward to with her husband. Exciting times!

At The Westin Hotel.

Terry, Gary & me!
The boys were a bit worse
 for wear!

Karen started organizing her shifts in Doha, so that she could have a break with me here in Abu Dhabi. And the clever girl managed to pull it off! She arrived late afternoon on 16th March & hit the ground running, as we went straight to The Westin Hotel, to spend the evening with friends.

Marie, Raha & Karen.

We are just weird people!

The kids were there, 
so we had some fun!

Very cute!

Reem & Mariam with Trevor, 
the tortoise.

Trevor, is now over 20 years old!
The family inherited her 
(Trevor is a girl)
 when I retired & left the UAE.

A workman found another 
tortoise & gave it to the girls.
So we now have two!

The next morning was spent chatting to Raha & Marie upstairs in the villa. Reem & Mariam were there as well & we all had a good time.

At The Vista

That evening we had a lovely meal at The Vista. Nice to be on familiar territory again! It is a lovely place to catch up on things & we had a wonderful time together.

The adult's beach, at The Club.

At The Wharfe Bar

Part of the outdoor
Wharfe Bar.

The view from the adult's beach.

Spent most of our days here in & around The Club! It was nice to continue where we left off in The Maldives!
Looking towards the marina
 from Galleria Mall.

I had not been there before.

Me thinks I have been
 here before!

However, one day we went shopping for a pair of men's sandals. This is what we bought & no sandals in sight!

Clare at one day old in Mutare, Zimbabwe.

Our final day together,
 well for this holiday at least!

Ahmed & Clare on their hols!

On 21st March it was Clare's birthday, she was 29 years old! Hard to believe really. But Toni sent this photo which I thought had been lost! Clare & Ahmed had just returned from a holiday in Spain & Portugal, so they both got to meet Karen just before she left for Doha.

Before we knew it, I was driving Karen to the airport at 3 am on 22nd March: our little holiday was over! As ever, far too short. See you soon girl!

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