“You need to take your pants off,” the customs official told my wife. He pointed down at Marissa’s spandex Lululemon camouflage yoga pants. He was indifferent to our infant daughter, who Marissa clutched in her arms. He completely ignored the husband who stood baffled by the command.
Last summer, before I left for Dubai in the middle of August, the United States had issued a travel advisory for that entire month. Apparently, they had received intelligence that Al Queda was planning an attack in the Middle East–a rather big region of the world. As a precaution, the United States Government decided to close many of its embassies during the first full week of August, the same week that Ramadan came to a close. One of the shuttered consulates included the one in Dubai. Read more
On my drive from New York to Cape Cod, I noticed a disparity among the Do Not Litter signs posted along the interstate. In Rhode Island, the signs warned drivers that the punitive fine is as low as $55. But one state over, Massachusettsans–now that’s a word and also some insight as to why outsiders opt for the term Masshole instead–can be charged up to $10,000 for chucking a piece of trash from their car window. Read more
The other day, somebody asked me: “Can I enter Dubai with an Israeli stamp in my passport?”
I didn’t have a definitive answer for them, but I definitely had the same question when I traveled to the Middle East last summer.
Before I visited the United Arab Emirates, the company that set up my trip to Dubai informed me that I would not have any issues. A few travel forums told similar stories. And while the answer on those sites sounds like a resounding yes, there is a slight caveat. (Note: I actually did not have Israeli stamps in my passport. I forgot that I had received a new passport after I had traveled to Israel.)
On a trip to Toronto’s Chinatown district, I turned to my left and saw an advertisement for massage. (The ad is featured in the picture above.) Then I turned to my right and noticed that the next massage business had a mirror image of the same relaxed couple. Read more