Saturday, March 6, 2021

Travel Considerations

The common topic among my friends is discussing wishful travel plans. Lamenting over the the inability to cross boarders without going through layers of quarantines and Covid tests and the top destinations once restrictions are lifted come up in virtually every conversation. Although I willingly participate, the honest answer is I don't care that much. Yes, I do feel like I'm missing out on one of the advantages of living in Europe, but I also do really like Krakow and I like getting even more familiar with this city as I live through the few months we have left here. 

Well, I at least thought I was perfectly satisfied bumming around in Krakow, but a friend of mine recently move to Dubai and I am now seriously entertaining the harebrained idea of visiting her. 

Other than my friend, I have virtually no reason to visit Dubai. Visiting the Middle East has never been on my bucket list and a place that advertises itself as a "luxury tourism city" is even less appealing to me. Yet, I have spent the last two days looking at flights and accommodations (a minimum of $600 combined for the week) and how to visit Dubai on a budget (virtually impossible). Everything I find seems to indicate that it is a bad idea, but I still cannot fully talk myself out of it. I keep cycling through the same lists of arguments:

  • See my friend
  • Visit someplace I would never otherwise go to
  • Easier access now than I probably will ever have again
  • Experience a brand new culture
  • Because I can!
  • Base travel is expensive, and I would likely have to stay in a communal hostel room 
  • Additional costs (food, attractions) are also expensive
  • There are very few free and cheap activities and I don't want to spend upwards of $1000 to sunbathe for a week
  • The recommended things to see and do (go to the top of the highest building in the world, ride a camel in the desert) are not particularly appealing to me
  • There are not good transportation options within the city and it is a car-centric city, so travel from one attraction to the next is expensive
  • It's hot & I sunburn easily
  • The time frame I would be there would be during Ramadan, and it is highly recommended to be particularly modest and avoid eating in public during that time
  • It's a 5 hour flight
  • I would have to get Covid tests going both ways and possibly have to quarantine when I get back into Poland
  • It's not a good idea to travel during Covid, period.
Clearly, the cons way outweigh the pros, yet I can't shake the idea. It would be easier to give a definitive "no" if I knew that I could dedicate the time and money to another trip. Right now, unfortunately, my prospects of skiing in the Alps and enjoying the Irish country side are little to none. We can travel around Poland, and I wouldn't mind re-visiting Warsaw or spending a weekend Łódź, and from the limited research I've done so far it seems that Sweden's travel restrictions are similar to Dubai's, but I'm only keen on visiting European destinations with Cameron and he has a strict no-travel policy in effect right now.
There is a definite possibility that other travel opportunities will open up as we move into spring and summer, but those aren't guarantees. I keep asking Cameron to just tell me a definite "no, please don't go to Dubai" or "yes, that would be a lot of fun for you" but Cameron does not speak in definites like that. Oh the woes! Please please please, if you have a strong option, one way or the other, let me know and receive me of my insufferable decision.

No Dubai photos, but I do have this really lovely sunset view from outside my flat. 

Winter is coming to an end, as demonstrated from this left-behind snowman nose. Although I enjoy the  sunny weather, it seems like I should be doing something more. 

No matter the weather, zapiekanki make a great lunchtime treat. Cameron and I happen to live close to what I've dubbed "Zapiekanka Square" since there are about a dozen of these baguette-pizza vendors all working out of the same cylindrical building. 

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