Thursday, May 21, 2009

On the Town

As dear Mr. Porter once observed, there is indeed no cure like travel, and for that reason Mr. Muscato and I are taking a little Bridget-Jones-style minibreak, running up to Dubai once more for a fix of glamor, sophistication, and candles and other local nonobtainables from Ikea.

Thanks to our dear pal The Hotelier we are ensconced in a very comfortable suite (oh, we live the Life Deluxe, on discounts, doncha know) with sweeping views of - haze. If and when the haze clears, I'm assured we will have views of the Palm, the Burg al-Arab, and, of course, this being Dubai, construction sites.

Sign of the changing times: we started the festivities with dinner last night at a very good, and at one time very hot, seafood spot. The last time we ate there, we got the very last table, on a combination of pleading, proof of reservation, and finally a discreet little cadeau. It's one of those places with several areas (formal dining, café, bar, terrace, etc.), each with a different menu, and there were all sorts of strict rules about what dish could be served in which zone, and how this wasn't possible, sir, and that wasn't possible, madam, and so very sorry...

Last night, we swept in reservationless, sat in state at a very lovely table with a very lovely view, had the hostess (and an armada of staff) tending to us as if we were the wounded at Gallipoli, were presented with a great heap of all the various menus combined, and heard repeatedly what seems to be the new mantra of the straitened era in which we find ourselves, oh, no, sir, nothing is too much trouble...

Lord, to paraphrase Miss Dinah Washington, what a difference an international economic collapse makes!


  1. Enjoy, darling.

    My favourite Dinah Washington lyric is...

    "You thrill me when you drill me".

  2. Sing it out, girl. I can relate to enjoying more flexibility and service with the recession....sometimes I want to back to the places that were too busy to serve me before and give them the Julia Roberts treatment from Pretty Woman....'you work on commission? Big mistake. BIG MISTAKE.'