Here’s my attempt at street photography in the Gold Souk of Dubai. Still working on my recap of GPP2014.
It’s Saturday morning of GPP week and the workshops have officially ended, and I finally had time to wonder around Dubai. (My flight was not till evening).
So I hoped into a cab at random and asked him to drive me to a souk, any souk. He brought me to the gold souk. I regret not getting a photo with the taxi driver, a very nice Malayalam gentleman from India. Despite my language barrier, we had a great conversation. At the very least, we established that Dubai is a very expensive city and that the zoo and the botanical gardens are great places to visit.
The place was too crowded with tourists. So decided to take a boat to the opposite shore. Awesome boatman. (Captain?)
Then it’s lunch at Paragon Palace. I’ve had chicken briyani quite often back home in Singapore, but just wanted to compare with the ones here. In fact it says on the menu “Arabic Chicken Briyani”. It was alright, but the chai was fantastic.
After lunch I decided it was too hot to walk so I ducked into a saloon for a trim and shave.They don’t make ‘em old school barbers anymore…
After the saloon, I’ve established that I’m truly and well lost. No idea where I am. But still see several tourists around, so no big deal.Who says X-E1 can’t shoot birds? A friend insisted that there were no stray cats in Dubai. This one’s for you Fatma.
Then came the highlight of the day. Chanced upon some kids shooting coloured water at each other. I guess it had something to do with Holi. So I asked them. They were from Rajestan and we indeed celebrating Holi a day earlier. During Holi, people celebrate the beginning of spring by spraying water and coloured powder on each other. It also has the beautiful meaning of forgiveness and repairing of broken bonds.
But after witnessing some particularly feisty water fights among some of the more aggressive kids, I suspect there’ll be some broken friendships that need mending next Holi.Sorry… couldn’t resist. This is what passes for my Henri Cartier-Bresson decisive moment.
With that, I bid farewell to the souk. Not after a last cab ride with this cool dude. He’s a Pashtun from Peshawar. I’m grateful to meet him, because all I’ve heard previously about Pashtun and Peshawar is from CNN and always followed by some explosion or misery. This dude was super cool, regaling me with tales of his six girlfriends.With Sajid Khan, the coolest dude in Dubai. Or as I anointed him, “Dude of Dubai”.
Next up, Gregory Heisler’s workshop. How do you summarise a Zen master’s teaching in words though?…???