When I first landed in Dubai and alighted the plane, the very fist thing that popped into my head was “Damn it it’s HOT!” considering that it was Summer when I came here, I still cannot believe how hot and sticky the wind was against my skin. I was born and raised in a tropical country, so a sweltering summer is not new to me, but I tell you, heat in here is intolerable.
The sun here also sets late. It gets dark here past 7 PM whereas in the Philippines it’s already dark by 6 PM. But aside from a whether forecast, there are also a lot of things in Dubai I want to share to you, and I hope I could share these without shaming my own country, but alas, it’s impossible not to compare.
In Dubai, Laws are respected. That’s the number one thing I learned. People respect authority and they are afraid of the Police. Even the smallest little things like traffic lights and pedestrian lanes are honored. In our country, people does not care about the law because they can buy the police. Here in Dubai cars stay on one lane. and there’s no traffic because everything is in order. There’s a bus stop on the side of the streets with a bus slot so vehicles don’t have to go around them.There are no intersections, just roundabouts. There are no street litters and there are no street beggars. Everything is fully automated. The Buses and Metros use one transportation card known as Nol Card. The government own most of the things the public use so there is uniformity. Parking spaces can be paid via text. Toll Gates are not really gates but are just car stickers and scanners that automatically charge you when you pass under them and this is can also be paid via text. Streets has speed detectors and will automatically take a picture of your car and your face — probably in HD. There are no old card here as they are not allowed on the streets. The water and electricity is paid as one and is also run by the government. There are only two Network providers and one of them is run also by the government — The Etisalat. Etisalat provides cellphone, landline, internet, etc. You cannot buy a random sim card on the streets. To buy a sim card you need to provide your identity and this number will be tied to you from then on forward, so you cannot easily use a number to scam people. They have a centralized record here for each person wherein everything about your identity is kept — your address, your number, your work and even your fingerprints, so whatever you do, there’s no escaping once you get a record.
Despite the hot embrace of the air, I am learning to love everything about Dubai — especially the Arabic bread. But every time I see how efficient and organized everything is, I can’t help but look back in my country and it saddens me to think that while other countries are already in the future our country is still stuck and sometimes, even back pedaling. I realized that scenes in futuristic movies won’t actually come true in all places all at once. Some countries will arrive there faster.
And I keep on thinking how, oh how on earth our people keep on voting rotten leaders and why can’t they realize that they have the power to change the course of our country.
Okay, enough depressing thoughts!
On other matters at hand. It makes me think… Have I found a place where I can plant my roots?