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Thursday, December 25, 2014

" Merry Christmas and Welcome to ABU DHABI..." 'Tammy Ann VanderWende' (Abu Dhabi Journey)

Dakinetalk is excited to welcome our newest regular guest-blogger Tammy Ann VanderWende.
Tammy is aKaua'i girl who recently moved to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emerites
 with her husband Tom, son Kyler and family dog Kealia.
Join Tammy on her adventures as she shares her experiences on life in the Middle East!

Merry Christmas and Welcome to UAE of ABU DHABI

Imagine my surprise when I first set foot here in the desert. 
Philipine Air and Etihad Airlines were our air bus of choice in 1st Class for the 22 hour flight from Lihue Kauai. A long but smooth flight with VIP Hospitality and Delicious Gourmet meals that amazed us!

We were greated by friendly Etihad escorts holding large poster boards with our family name "Vander Wende" , I always wondered what it would be like to see my name held up by a stranger  bearing a smile when I first got off the plane, it was pretty snazzy and I felt...important!

We followed the young Filipino Etihad escort and also a female Mafraq escort  (Tom's company sent a Greeter to us to be sure we were off on the right foot and in with the right drivers!) Walking through Abu Dhabi International Airport was very interesting indeed...right off the bat we saw many different types of people speaking different languages.

I smiled with wonder and amazement at my first impressions of the UAE!(United Arab Emirates)
Earlier this year I vowed to make changes and take chances, 10 months later I am beginning a new chapter in my life at age 50, in the Middle East! Never in my wildest dreams would I EVER think I'd end up living here!

So, we follow with excitement our escorts to the Etihad Guest Lounge, here we are greeted with more friendly attendants. Offering us an array of refreshments from Champagne  to Espresso, salmon lox bagels and cream cheese, soup du jour, and many many yummy treats!
Kyler was in 7th Heaven with Hot Cocoa and brownies, fresh fruits and chocolates too!

Hot showers where available with a relaxing massage! We declined such wonderful pampering, but Tom did not pass up on the hot Facial and Shave to feel refreshed! I giggled with delight to watch Tom get a good ole fashion shave! After all my Grand Father Placido Cabacungan, owned the famous Hanapepe Barbershop across from  Roberts store now known as Dawn Traina Art Gallery, the Young  Barber shaving Tom, reminded me of my Grandpa!

When we where done, we followed the escorts through the lobby to our luggage and drivers! 
Much to our surprise, we where greeted by a Shiny Gold Porsche in the middle of the lobby. Tom told me of the riches of this country and all that we will see and experience, seeing the Gold Porsche was definitely an Exciting Welcome to Abu Dhabi!!!

Inshallah - Lord Willing
Shukran - Thank You
Afuwan - Your Welcome

Editors note;
Every picture is worth a thousand words. I hope you enjoy these photos of Tammy sharing her Abu Dhabi journey as much as I do. I feel like I am on this journey with Tammy and her family and hope in the coming weeks you feel the same way.  We look forward to her next blog. 

Tom, Tammy, Kyler and Kealia want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas!



KimoRosen said...

I have been following Tammy Ann and husband Tom on Facebook since they left Kauai For Abu Dhabi. I really enjoy them sharing their journey, like this blog, I feel like I am right there with them! Mahalo Nui Loa for sharing this journey with everyone in cyberspace! Merry Christmas and welcome to dakinetalk!

Ja'ana Makipaa said...

Yabadabadoo! What a long strange trip it's been, following the VanderWende's journey!