let me begin with the story preface.  we got our apartment, which we later found out came with ONE KEY.  nice.  so we need another key… or 4.  so we have been searching for a place to duplicate keys for a week and a half now.  we have tried the place that we were told about at the emirates mall, which no longer exists, the ace hardware at the greens that we couldn’t find, and the minutes store at the ibn battuta mall that no longer makes key duplicates.  so we went to the information counter at the mall and asked the guy there where we could go (since we HAD to go today, because we have to give the maid a copy tomorrow), and drove ALL THE WAY across town to the only place anyone knew of.  now keep in mind, we live in the marina, not the middle east.  big difference.  this place, its in the middle east.  a complete different country.


first of all, we were stuck in traffic so bad (at 10 pm) that it literally took us 20 minutes to move 0.3 km.  (thats 2/10 of a mile).  second of all, we were out of gas.  a very bad thing when you are stuck in traffic so bad that it takes you 20 minutes to move 2/10 of a mile.  third of all, we really don’t know where we are going.  we have an asterisk on a map that mall info dude drew.  thats it.  so we are circling around this block trying to find the mysterious place that has a sign that has the word “key” on it.  but we can’t move, because we would run over hundreds of thousands of dudes in robes.  EVERYWHERE.  this is arabia-town, like no other.  i was a little scared.  and hiding.  there were NO women around anywhere.  and there was no english.  and it smelled bad.  and there were horns honking.  and lights flashing.  and people trying to stop the car to talk to us in arabic.  eek. and we are out of gas.  oh yeah, and i have to pee like I HAVE NEVER HAD TO PEE BEFORE!


so we decide after almost an hour of circling that we have to go get gas.  so we did (taking a ridiculous amount of time), and we were SURE that there were going to be NO key-making places open at 11 pm.  well apparently, there are.  not one, but 57,000 in a row.  are you kidding me?  there is NOWHERE to get a key made in ALL of dubai, except for this place, and we get here, and there is an entire CITY BLOCK of key-making places?!?  all open at 11 pm.  what’s next, hanger alley?!?  so we find the only place to park that there possibly is (after much honking, flashing, and waving…) and park the car.  then we sit and look at each other.  um…. i’m not getting out of this car!!  well, jonathan thinks i should.  he doesn’t want to leave me in the car, and i don’t want to get out of it.  so i do, because he insists, and have to cross the street like the advanced level in frogger, and run into the closest key shop there is.  after we passed through the PLASTIC doors, the smell hit us.  omg, i think i might fall out right here on the floor.  which. by the way… ew.  after regaining consciousness and getting over my dizzy spell, i begin to notice that i am standing in at 10×10 room with – count them – SEVEN arabic men sitting around talking and staring at me – the girl in the tee shirt.  eek.  so jonathan got the dude to cut the keys – and although we could have bargained our way to cheaper keys – at this point, we were doing whatever it took to get out of there the quickest.  btw – next time i say i’m sitting in the car – IM SITTING IN THE CAR!  oh yeah, and i REALLY have to pee now.  like i’m not even kidding.  really.


we hop in the car, and i could not tell the gps to “go home” fast enough.  and we are 20 km from home.  (about 12 miles.)  oh yeah, here’s where the dinging comes in – the cars here… they ding when you hit 120 km/h.  most cars just ding once.  the rentals – they ding THE ENTIRE TIME that you are over 120 km/h.  the point of the story??


[insert blog title here.]


here are some pictures that i managed to get of our little adventure before i got scared that i was going to be hauled off for taking them…




the burj as of today.

full speed ahead. 


in traffic – needing gas and a toilet.


the “choking” as i like to call it.


the grand mosque.  nest to “key lane”.