The Latest – Life in the Desert

IMG_2477I self diagnosed myself this week with the flu. Having a fever while in the desert is just plain stupid! The fever part lasted two consecutive nights and really socked it to me. I have gracefully recovered and am at about 85%.

Since it was such a rough week, I ended it with a couple of spa treatments. I thought having a hot stone massage would do my body good and adding a facial would give me the ultimate relaxation. I arrived to my normal spot and was greeted by Nur, my wonderful therapist. She said to me, “Your face looks oilier than normal.” I nodded because I’d noticed too. Then she said, “You look so tired.” I laughed and responded “I’m oily and tired.” She laughed too and said “That’s exactly why you’re here!” I laid down on the bed of smooth hot rocks and melted away. Nur was right, I was there because I was oily and tired and needed every bit of the 3 hours at the spa. I felt so much better when I left Nur. I headed home for my weekend and decided to treat myself to a nice meal but first I wanted to check out the new lounge on the 61st floor in my building. I live in the tallest resident building in Qatar. When I moved in last December, there was a lot of hype around this sushi lounge that was supposed to open in January 2015. In true fashion, it just opened this week; 11 months delayed. I took the elevator up and stepped into a beautifully hip new lounge. The space was previously the penthouse suite. It’s a quite large space with spectacular views of the city to include portions of the gulf. The red, black, and gray decor is gorgeous. The furniture is a bit futuristic. The over sized red sofas remind me of the Jetson’s. There’s a nice large bar and there’s a limited food menu which is good. There’s no need to try and have a lot of variety in such a space. The cocktail menu looks fun. There is a DJ too. My purpose was truly just to get a tour and I did.  I’ll go back to hang out one night.

Dinner…I made my way to Prime Steakhouse. I’ve become accustomed to dining alone and tonight was one of those nights. I was seated next to the entrance and I really just sat still and took in my surroundings. The couple next to me carried on a conversation in French and Spanish and would throw in an occasional phrase in English. In the distance to my left was a private birthday party for a local woman. I watched as it came time for the staff to enter with the cake, roses, and elegantly wrapped gifts. I smiled as everyone broke out in the universal Happy Birthday tune. I reflected on my three hours at the spa. Once I go back to the US, I will truly miss my time in Qatar. It’s been a fascinating time of rest, relaxation, fun, culture and variety. I’m sure I won’t sit next to anyone speaking three languages or see a group of people from 5 countries sing Happy Birthday.

I ordered my meal: crab cakes, rib eye, grilled vegetables and a glass of Penfold’s Koonunga Hills Shiraz Cabernet blend. I was given a sample of their signature BBQ short rib topped with sweet potato crisps. It was a tiny bit of deliciousness; sauce and all. The sweet potato added a bit of complexity that really worked. The crab cakes were served on a bed of lettuce with a creamy vinegar based dressing. They were good enough but no big chunks of crab that I dreamed of. Finally, the rib eye…it was just okay. I was a bit disappointed because my previous dining experience at the same place, I had an amazing steak. I guess next time, I’ll order the other steak.

And finally, our beautiful @FLOTUS was in Qatar this week speaking about education for girls. It would have been a dream to cross paths with such an amazing woman. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. However, some close acquaintances did cross paths with her and I guess for now, I’ll live vicariously through them.

Living life & it’s good.

PS – I’m currently not on FaceBook so feel free to share my blog on FB if you’d like.

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