After escaping from Baghdad, I spent two glorious days in Dubai, visiting with my old Broadside pal, who shall heretoforth be known as "JJ". Dubai is like Las Vegas of the Middle East, but without the gambling or strip clubs. But it has everything else. Gaudy, tacky, glamorous, ostentatious, glitzy and extravagant are a few adjectives that come to mind. Every hotel, every club, every restaurant is trying to outdo the other. Talk about keeping up with the Joneses.
JJ and I dined at "Pisces," which has won voted best seafood restaurant in Dubai several years running. It's located inside the Madinat Jumeriah resort, a giant complex that is a combination shopping mall-luxury hotel--entertainment venue. And the food at Pisces? FAN-FRACKING-TASTIC! Some of the best seafood I've had...ever...anywhere! Mr. Crab had the sea bass; JJ had the scallops; plus a spicy tuna appetizer and a bottle of Chilean white wine. Yum yum yuM! It ain't cheap. But damn was it worth it!
The photo above of Dubai Creek and downtown Dubai cityscape was shot from my hotel room. And you wanna talk over-the-top? Check out this shot of the Burj Dubai construction site (right). When completed in late 2008, the Burj Dubai tower will be the tallest building in the world. As of June 24, the tower stood at 492.9 meters (1,617 feet) and 136 stories. The tower will eventually rise to at least 700 meters (2,296 feet) and about 160 stories. By comparison, the tallest building in the world is currently the Taipei Tower at 1,671 feet. The exact height of the Burj Dubai is being kept secret until the last minute, over fears that another tower could surpass it!