Thursday, March 21, 2013

My Hollywood Pitch

When i am home this summer i am thinking of making a stopover in Tinseltown to pitch my idea for a new TV show.  Although i would NEVER want to star in it, i wouldn't mind the royalties if it becomes a hit.  It would be an oddly concocted series consisting of reality TV and Seinfeld like comedy.

One Part 
~Travel/Education Series~ 
It's only on travel shows where you can learn completely random facts you would have otherwise never thought of.

How exactly does one ride the world's fastest roller coaster whilst keeping the hijab (head covering for women) in place?

While waiting in line at Ferrari World for the Formula Rossa Ride (which for the record is AMAZING!  See the details HERE) i was trying to figure out why ski masks were available upon entering.  i understood the eye goggles but ski masks!?  After eyeing the clothes rack for several minutes i realized they were not ski masks but hijab coverings to be fitted snugly over head scarves so the women wearing hijabs would never at any time need to be uncovered.  Even when traveling at 1.7 Gs.

While eating at the newest Cheesecake Factory i feel like i just might be back in the States except for the human snow balls that keep bouncing off our window.

During school field trips kids learn the importance of the "Ships of the Desert" or more commonly known as the camel.  
Random fact... Camels can swim.

The camels dwelling in the Arabian desert are the dromedary, or one-humped camel.  The Bedouins would use them for travel,  their milk, hide, meat (eating baby camels only) and locating water.  Apparently, once a camel knows where water is it will always be able to locate it again.  Camels have 3 stomachs and the reason their spit is so nasty is because it comes from the first stomach.  

The Arabian horse is highly revered in the Arab culture and has one less rib than other breeds, is known for its endurance and has a distinctly different style of running.

One of the most fascinating things to me about the United Arab Emirates is that this country is only 41 years old.  Within that short span it jettisoned itself into the future at about the the same speed as the ride mentioned above.  Transforming itself from Bedouins living in tents with little to no electricity and traveling to the local missionary hospitals on camels to a glittering city on the map filled with the biggest, fastest and tallest.    

One Part
(or Candid Camera for those of us in the older generation)

At least once a week i glance around suspiciously to see if i am being taped for practical joke.  i wait for someone to jump out of the bushes sand snickering, "No no, it's all just a joke!  You've been Punk'd!"

Parking on sidewalks is common place.  So one day at school i pulled into a spot next to 2 other cars ON the sidewalk.  (For the record, i use that word loosely as nobody can actually walk on them.)  i see a school security guard run up to me and said, "Ma'am, you can't park there."
"Okaaayyy...  Where should i park then?"
"Right over there."
"You mean you want me to park my car in front of the NO Parking sign?"
"Yes, ma'am.  It is better over there."
Wide eyed blank stare, "Ok..."
(Another side note; i adore those security guards! They greet us everyday with a smile and help keep our school safe and i know they are only doing what is asked of them.)
For the past 3 months i have navigated through the sea of cars and looked for a spot among the 20 other cars all parked in front of the NO Parking sign. 

Yesterday i found this on my windshield.

Then there is the regular everyday parking.  Just when i am SO happy to have scored a decent parking spot, i go in, run my errand and come out only to find a vacant car parked right behind me.  i kid you not, happened this morning and while my parents were here.  My mom was shocked, "Oh! What do you do?!" she asked in her American, this is astonishing voice.
"Well, you scan the area for the driver.  If there appears to be no one around you get in your car and lay on the horn.  Watch."
We both got in the car, buckled up and blared the horn for about 15 seconds.  Out of nowhere appears a driver making some sort of apologetic hand motion.  He gets in his car and inches it forward just enough for me to pull out and Viola we are able to leave.   

One Part 
~Housewives of Dubai~

Here the viewing audience may be a bit disappointed if they are expecting cat fights and all out war.  The ladies are helpful, sweet, welcoming and seemed to have just tumbled straight out of the latest Beautiful and Exotic magazine.  They also know how to fill up a calendar.  Throw a bunch of adventurous women together who can't work in a foreign country and they will find ways to fill their days.  Girls trips, lunches, Arabic lessons, golf lessons, shopping, paddle boarding, cooking classes, volunteering at school and ships docked port side.  You name it, they will do it.  Add to that every one's various backgrounds and accents which makes for hilarious and interesting conversations around the table.  Imagine an American, a Japanese, a German, a Lebanese, a Canadian, an Egyptian and an Australian all discussing cultural differences at lunch.  i know right? sounds like the beginning of a bad joke but here it is just a daily event and one of my favorite parts of this city! 

One Part 

At least once a week Chris and i discuss our daily situations and how we could easily create Arab Seinfeld episodes out of them.  You should hear us, we are hilarious!  

In order to purchase a bottle of wine here (other than in a restaurant IN a hotel) you have to apply for and hold an actual liquor license, which must be renewed every year and is granted only to those who can verify employment.  The license is typically under the man's name.  This means grocery store do not stock any alcohol.  NONE.  

In order to make a purchase, one must find a discreetly hidden store and present your license.  This means if i decide last minute to make my favorite recipe that calls for a wine reduction sauce and the hubs, holding our license is out of the country, i can't just run to the store to pick up a bottle.  Seems i would be out of luck...  
Don't feel sorry for me though, i can have it delivered to my door with just a click or phone call.  

i won't get into the details but it happens.

i don't know who i am anymore.

It has become a sort of novel game now.  Whenever i am asked to give my name at a place of business, i clearly say TAMI and when they repeat it back to me instead of correcting them 10 times and writing it down on a piece of paper i just smile and nod, "Yes" and wait to discover my new moniker when they finally do call me.  One place i have visited 5 times and the receptionist knows me as Kimmy.  When i call there i always refer to myself as Kimmy or my mobile number... whichever they find first.

Me: This is Kimmy, you have me down for an appointment on the 1st at 12:00.  i need to change it.
Them: Kimmy is your name??
Me: Um, yes.  You have me down on the 1st of April for an appointment at 12:00
Them: Kimmy?...Hmm, can't find it. (i'm waiting, waiting...Finally i hear an exasperated sigh...)  What is your mobile number?
Me: 0501112222
Them: Oh yes, Kimmy!! You have an appointment on the 1st @ 12:00."

Then there is this...

The poor bag boy who is following a lady home on the unpaved desert road to take her groceries home.  i'm guessing he wasn't expecting this long of a walk when she motioned for him to carry her groceries out.  

This is the stuff TV is made of.
But as Chris has reminded me, nobody outside of Dubai would really appreciate the humor in the oddities.  True, Hollywood would probably advertise my show as Sci-Fi.  Quite ironic actually, considering i enjoy our adventure here but never watch Sci-Fi because it's just too far out there for my taste.