You Know You Live In The UAE When

In HOME, LIFE by Sam Prance

Having lived in the U.K. for the most part of my life, it can be quite hard to imagine what it would have been like to have grown up elsewhere. Tea, queuing and unnecessarily apologising for things are all something of a norm to me. That’s why it’s with great interest that I asked the inimitable duo, Christine Simonian and Sonam Chopra, to divulge on what it’s like to have grown up in one of the most luxurious parts of the UAE. Here lies their guide: You Know You Live In The UAE When.


You Know You Live In The UAE When:

  • You can have anything delivered to your door, any time of the day, any day of the week.
  • Going for a midnight cruise with your friends for shawarmas is a way of life.
  • Walking is thought of as an alien notion, especially during the scorching hot summer days that peak to 50’C. (1 gallon of petrol in the UAE is equivalent to buying a small bottle of the water in the UK.)
  • Being born and raised in the UAE does not mean you know how to speak Arabic; 91% of the UAE’s population are expats.
  • A rainy day means you don’t go to school or work because the streets are flooded. Funnily enough, we only get around 5 days of rain annually. The UAE is definitely not prepared for anything but heat!
  • If you see the words “largest”, “tallest” or “most expensive”, it’s probably in the UAE.
  • You can go tanning and skiing on the same day. Thanks to the world’s largest indoor snow park, Ski Dubai.
  • Spending all of your monthly allowance in a mall, shopping centre, or shopping festival is considered to be the norm. Dubai Mall itself had more tourists than New York did in 2012.
  • You have had brunch at the world’s only 7-star hotel, Burj Al Arab.
  • You see a white and green Ferrari or Lamborghini roaming around the streets of Dubai and say “Oh look, it’s the police”.
  • You have a friend who lives on a Palm-tree shaped island 10 minutes from town. The same island where Simon Cowell, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt & David Beckham, all own a holiday house.
  • You’ve been mistaken for being a prostitute at least once at a club.
  • You’ve fallen off a camel at a desert camping trip. (Contrary to popular belief, we don’t commute on camels.)
  • Hummus and shisha sum up every afternoon.
  • You love rap music and rap music loves you. Hearing rappers like J Cole, Big Sean, and Wiz Khalifa include “Dubai” and “Abu Dhabi” in their songs is standard.
  • You have two seasons: Warm and Hot.
  • You take pride in celebrities tweeting about their glamorous experiences in the UAE.
  • Spending two hours of your day in a traffic jam does not seem to bother you anymore.
  • On a night out, you feel like you’re part of a music video.
  • No matter where you are, you will always consider the UAE to be your home.


Christine Simonian & Sonam Chopra

Christine Simonian and Sonam Chopra are students at Edinburgh University. They both study architecture and happen to share a flat. In what may come as a great shock to you after reading this article, Christine and Sonam both hail from the UAE and, after writing together, it seems only natural that they launch their own tv series and clothing line.

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