Transition of Thoughts

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He was an intrepid individual as far as I can remember. Whether it was going to the thrill rides in any amusement park or skydiving from a plane in Dubai, he had been an outdoor adrenaline junkie. And so, when he decided to scale Mount Kilimanjaro, I wasn’t the least bit surprised.

Linking to Sammi’s Weekend Prompt: Intrepid & Ragtag Daily Prompt: Outdoors

Emirates Business Class Review – Dubai to Kuwait

Emirates, the national carrier of Dubai has consistently been rated among the best airlines on the planet by multiple rating agencies and customer surveys. It has one of the world’s largest wide-body (double aisle) fleet of aircraft consisting of Airbus A380s and Boeing 777s.

For someone like me who has grown up flying on single aisle aircraft like the Boeing 737, Airbus A320 and A321, this is surely something to look forward to. Until sometime last year, I hadn’t flown even once on Emirates but as luck would have had it, since then I have aggregated a lot of frequent flyer miles under them courtesy more than 15 or so flights to destinations across continents.

I would be lying if I say that I hadn’t ever dreamt of flying their business class one day. But little did I know that the opportunity would come so soon. While boarding my flight EK871 (Boeing 777-300ER) to Kuwait on Saturday, 2nd September 2017, I was handed a new boarding pass indicating my seat change to 11E in business class. I was delighted to say the least. So yeah to those asking, it was a last minute upgrade which means that I did miss out on the business class lounge.

Cabin and Seat

Emirates Business Class Review - Dubai to Kuwait

Each seat measures 20.5 inches wide with a pitch of 60 inches. The seat is angled flat and has multiple controls to do the job. Thankfully, the angle is there at the head rather than at the feet and there’s also a level of privacy with the shield between the seats. Interestingly, the A380 has a completely flat bed in the business class which I hope to try one day :D.

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D for Dubai International Airport

D for Dubai International Airport

A380: The queen of the skies

Dubai is something of a maximum city. With the tallest buildings, the longest bridges and tunnels, the highest restaurants, the glitziest malls and more, it has created quite a name for itself across the planet.

And so how can its airport stay behind? The world’s 3rd business by passenger traffic, 6th busiest by cargo traffic and the busiest operating both wide-body jets courtesy the flagship Emirates airline (B777s & A380s), Dubai International Airport is bursting at its seams. It’s like almost everyone on the planet arrives in Dubai more often than not either on transit or for business and / or pleasure.

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Skywatch Friday – Nightfall at Kite Beach

Skywatch Friday - Nightfall at Kite Beach

“As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air – however slight – lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness.”

William O. Douglas

Linking to Skywatch Friday

Skywatch Friday: Off the coast of Palm Jumeirah

Skywatch Friday: Off the coast of Palm Jumeirah in Dubai

The autumn sky off the coast of Palm Jumeirah in Dubai was as clear as ever. A light breeze amidst the afternoon sun had made it a really pleasant day. And I was just reminded of the quote below.

“The blue sky is infinitely high, crystal clear…that’s what the world should be…a world of infinite possibilities, laid before us, crystal clear”

– Kenshin

Linking to Skywatch Friday

Dubai Diaries: An evening at the world’s highest restaurant

Most people who go to Burj Khalifa end up at either of the observation decks – Floor 124 or Floor 148. I instead decided to visit the At.mosphere restaurant which at a height of 1450 feet is regarded as the world’s highest restaurant.

The entry on the ground is through the Armani hotel where the staff at the reception check your booking. With regards to the dress code, the website mentions ‘smart elegant’. I had worn a formal shirt with jeans and it worked fine. Since I had sports shoes on, the guys at the reception gave me a pair of formal shoes to put on before going to the restaurant. But in order to avoid last minute hassles, I would still suggest to follow the dress code to the T rather than having to argue with them at the reception.

The lift speeds up..

The lift speeds up..

The lift goes straight to the 124th floor (in a matter of seconds) and you end up with a popping sound in your ear due to the change in altitude. Once you arrive at the 124th floor, you have to come down the steps to the 123rd floor where on one side is the lounge and on the other is the more expensive restaurant.

And I am here finally..

And I am here finally..

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Dubai Diaries – A trip to the Miracle Garden

Spread over 72000 sq m and with over 45 million flowers, Miracle Garden is the world’s largest natural flower garden. In a country where temperatures can easily cross 50 degrees in the summer, this is quite a spectacular achievement which points to the vision of the authorities to create varied tourist experiences for the avid traveler.

The garden is open for visitors from October to April and closed thereafter as the peak summer starts. There are flowers covering trains, the Eiffel tower, a clock, peacocks, cars, village houses, Burj Khalifa and more. For those who are interested, a butterfly garden has also opened its doors next to the Miracle Garden.

The way the flowers have been arranged shows the amount of effort which would have gone in ensuring that tourist have a lovely time. It’s an amazing place to take in the fresh air and relax.

Miracle Garden

Miracle Garden

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Dubai diaries: The different moods of Burj Khalifa

Standing tall at a height of about 829m, Burj Khalifa is the tallest man-made structure in the world. With observation decks on the 124th and 148th floors, the Armani hotel and the world’s highest restaurant (At.mosphere) at the 122nd floor, this is one of the biggest tourist attractions on Dubai’s tourism map.

If you thought that was enough, you are wrong. Burj Khalifa is also famous for it’s record LED projection which uses about 70,000 LED bulbs in creating some fantastic shapes and designs.

Burj Khalifa Burj Khalifa

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Movie Review – Mission: Impossible 4 (Ghost Protocol)

Tom Cruise is back to reprise his role as Ethan Hunt in the 4th installment of the Mission Impossible series after a hiatus of 5 years. He began the 1st installment way back in 1996 when he was just 34 but even today he still seems fighting fit. So does this movie have in it to rock the box office like the earlier parts? Lets see.

The movie begins in Budapest where one of the IMF (Impossible Missions Force) agents assigned to intercept a courier related to a particular person who is code-named ‘Cobalt’, is killed. Ethan along with Simon Pegg (Benji Dunn) and Paula Patton (Jane Carter) – both IMF agents, are sent to infiltrate the  Kremlin in Moscow to recover files related to ‘Cobalt’. But before they are successful, someone bombs the Kremlin and the IMF is blamed for it. The IMF secretary immediately declares “Ghost Protocol” which dissolves the IMF but the agents can do a covert op. ‘Cobalt’ is identified as a Russian nuclear strategist who plans to start a nuclear war with the US. The rest of the movie deals with how the IMF manages to avert the nuclear disaster that is about to engulf America.

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Book Review – The Patriot

To be truthful I hadn’t ever heard of this book or the author. A couple of weeks back I got an email from him asking me to review his labour of love. I immediately checked out the synopsis and was hooked on. A novel on marine terrorism and that too by an Indian author is as rare as it can get.

The book goes with the tagline: Terror on the High Seas. Going through the cover with the image showing a very rough sea and a ship – INS Indraprastha in the background, you start thinking that this is going to be a real thrill ride.

With over two hundred thousand metric tonnes of highly volatile crude oil, she is a massive Indian flag merchant vessel sailing in the Arabian Sea towards Cochin in India. But in between the ship is hijacked by 9 highly equipped terrorists who with their Kalashnikov’s and grenade launchers look ready for a grueling mission. They plant underwater mines around the hull in front of the captain’s eyes. What is their aim? Will their mission succeed? Why does one of the terrorists change sides midway? The book tackles all these questions and more.

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