Archive for April, 2010

I Live at the Mall

I Live at the Mall

Before moving to Abu Dhabi, I probably went to a mall no more than once a year. We didn’t have malls in New York City and since Beth and I didn’t have a car, we never drove out to the suburbs to go shopping. It was only on the rare trip to see family in [...]


WOMAD Was “Wow, Man”

WOMAD Was "Wow, Man"

Last night Beth and I went to the Corniche to see the final night of WOMAD (World of Music and Dance)—a three day music festival here in Abu Dhabi. They’ve been doing WOMAD the UK since 1982, but this is only it’s second year in Abu Dhabi. It’s focused on “world” music, but here, that [...]


Our New Nephew

Our New Nephew

Even though Beth and I couldn’t be in Texas to help welcome him to his new world, we’re very excited to have a new nephew—Braeden Archibald Hawkins. Braeden is my sister Rachel’s second son and the Texas Longhorns’ newest fan. What you can’t see in the pictures of my dad holding Braeden is that Rachel [...]


Taking Kellen to the Zoo

Taking Kellen to the Zoo

Before I left for Abu Dhabi I had a chance to fly home and spend about 10 days in Texas with my family. One afternoon we went to the Fort Worth Zoo with Rachel and my nephew Kellen. It was a gorgeous day and the temperature was still low enough that we hoped many of [...]


The Library at NYU Abu Dhabi

The Library at NYU Abu Dhabi

Hopefully Beth will be able to provide a more detailed write-up of the NYU Library soon, but I took some pictures and a couple short videos the other day and wanted to get those up now. Downstairs Get the latest Flash Player to see this player. [Javascript required to view Flash movie, please turn it [...]


Repo Men vs. “Obamacare”

Repo Men vs. "Obamacare"

Since I’m currently “fun-employed,” I decided to go the movie this afternoon. I’m always up for a gritty possible-future sci-fi movie, so I took in Repo Men staring Jude Law and Forest Whitaker. The story takes place in the near future where a large corporation has developed artificial organs and body parts that you can [...]


Blue Collar Hospitality

Blue Collar Hospitality

I’ve been truly struck by how friendly and hospitable service staff in Abu Dhabi have been. Whether it’s the doorman outside our hotel, waitstaff in a restaurant, or cashiers in a store, they always greet you with a genuine smile and go the extra mile to make your experience a good one. A couple examples: [...]


Tex-Mex in Abu Dhabi?!? And Dr. Pepper!!!

Tex-Mex in Abu Dhabi?!? And Dr. Pepper!!!

On Monday night Beth and I ate in one of our hotel’s restaurants. I had the Arabic mixed grill (more kofta baby!) which was very good. The beef kebabs were especially well seasoned and the highlight of my meal. Unfortunately, there were only three or four little cubes. Beth had Thai curry with duck. The [...]


Abu Dhabi from 50 Stories Up

Abu Dhabi from 50 Stories Up

After a quick tour of our future apartment, Steve and Gale took us up to the roof of Sama Tower to show us the pool and fitness center. The roof is largely enclosed, so there’s shade, but open skylights allow a breeze to circulate. The other neat part of looking around was that we got [...]


Welcome to Our (Future) Home

Welcome to Our (Future) Home

After we ate lunch at the Palace Hotel, Steve and Gale took us over to Sama Tower where all the NYU students, faculty, and staff will be living. Beth and I will be in our hotel through this Thursday, then move to a temporary furnished apartment, before finally relocating to Sama when our belonging arrive [...]


Hug This Man

Hug This Man

When we got off the plane, the first thing we saw was a young woman holding a sign which read, “John Edward Sexton.” The name sounded familiar but I couldn’t place the name. I was thinking British government official. As we walked to customs with our own airport liaison, Beth said how cool it was [...]


Dining at the Palace

Dining at the Palace

Before we came to Abu Dhabi, I decided that I wanted to spend one night at the Emirates Palace Hotel. This is actually a lofty goal as even their smallest rooms start at about AED 3000 ($1,000 US) per night. Boy was I surprised on Sunday afternoon when Beth’s new boss, Steve Shorb, suggested that [...]


Fine Dining at 36,000 Feet

Fine Dining at 36,000 Feet

Beth and I are simple people. We ride the subway to work. We do our own laundry. We fly coach. At 6’4″, however, I don’t regularly fit comfortably into airline seats. I’ve had the pleasure of squeezing my long legs into undersized seats on transoceanic flights to Germany (twice), Japan, England, Hawaii (twice), China, Ireland, [...]


Reading the Koran

Reading the Koran

I have a confession to make. I’ve never read the Bible. Well, let me clarify… I’ve never read the whole Bible. Yes, even though my father was a minister and I was quite active in church growing up, I’m one of those Christians who’s never actually read the Bible. But when Beth and I decided [...]


Farewell to the Wonderful Land of Oz

Farewell to the Wonderful Land of Oz

In the final run-up to leaving New York City, one image continually stuck in my head—Dorothy saying goodbye to all of her friends before leaving Oz to return to her family in Kansas. I know that must seem backward, but you have to first  understand that I never wanted to live in New York City. [...]