Dubai Post 67: Getting Assimilated

Last night was the semi-final for the Euro Cup.  My office was headed to a bar to watch the game so I gladly joined in.  As I hopped in the cab on the way to the hotel, I casually said 104.4 please. If you have ever gone out with me in Chicago, I probably had the cab driver put on 96.3.  Once I realized what I did, I noted to myself that I was really getting integrated into the Dubai life.

I would say this was a true sign of getting past the “visiting the city” phase.   The “going out” radio station is not something a tourist would know, probably not even someone who has been in a city for a month.  It most likely took a few months for me to realize 96.3 was my going out station in Chicago which is exactly how long it took for me to realize 104.4 was my going out station in Dubai.

I then started to ponder on what were some other signs that I was assimilated in Dubai.  Here are a few examples that I came up with:

-The Coffee guy knows my order: Every morning I walk towards Caribou and the same guy always greets me, “Hello Boss, one iced Americano, medium or small?”

-I have a back alley shortcut: I found this while strolling around my building when Samantha met me for lunch last week when she was in town.  It took some time but I finally found one.

-I have a favorite Arabic saying: "Inshallah".  I will have a small post on this later.

-I have a go-to bar: this happened mostly because of the Euro but when in doubt, I typically head to Barasti.

Those are the first five things that came to my mind.  I am sure there will be more that come across my mind in my last few weeks here.  But of course, just as I am getting assimilated, I leave in three weeks. If you have “getting assimilated” examples that you experienced either while abroad or moving to a new city feel free to comment.

A few shoutouts:

-I am on my third book of the trip, Barbarians at the Gates. It is phenomenal and tells the tale of the LBO of RJR Nabisco.  If you like finance you will enjoy it. It is a fascinating read is turning into one of my favorite books of all time. It started a little slow but is now thrilling for me.  If you are like my GF, you will not like it and make fun of me for reading it.

-If you need something to listen to while stuck in traffic, on a jog or at work check out my college roommates podcast. (click podcast if you are asking what the link it is.) It is him and his roommates basically talking about whatever.  They have a few bits but basically talk about what is on their mind.  WARNING, they can get "dirty" and sometimes talk about things that would make my Grandmother’s hair stick up. So Mom, Dad, Grandma Granddad do not click on the link. But for everyone else, I found it simply awesome.  It is really hard to casually talk with someone for over an hour about whatever.  Give them your feedback at


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