For over a week now, Dubai has been under a 24 hour lockdown curfew due to the Coronavirus – this means you can only leave your house if it is absolutely essential e.g. to work, to buy groceries or to visit the hospital. To leave your house, you must apply for a ‘movement permit’ before doing so which should be approved by the UAE government (you can only apply for a permit once every three days). It may seem extreme, but I think the UAE is doing a great job at tackling this virus and ensuring people are staying home.
With this, of course comes its challenges, and it definitely has been a struggle staying home 24 hours a day! Unlike other countries, we cannot go out for daily exercise or anything like that, so it really is a complete lockdown here! Luckily we do have a balcony in our apartment block so we can at least go outside for some fresh air every now and then. I thought I would show you what we have been getting up to over the past week and how we have been keeping ourselves busy and entertained!
We normally start off our day around 9am and the first thing we do is cook some breakfast. We’ve been having fried eggs with chips the last couple of mornings and I love it! Not so healthy, but its a good start to the day and fills us up.
We then normally sit in the living room for an hour or so and play a few rounds of cards. We love playing ‘Rummy’ so we’ll usually play best of three and see who wins – normally me!
Since the full 24 hour lockdown, we have only left the house once to go food shopping in Carrefour. We applied for our movement permit the night before and it was approved pretty quickly after. We do have a small supermarket downstairs but they don’t have much choice so we decided to go to Carrefour and do a really big shop. Anyone leaving the house in Dubai, must wear a mask and gloves at all times. We took a taxi to Carrefour as they have stopped the U-Drive and Ekar car rental services that we would normally use.
When we arrived at Carrefour, our shopping trolley was completely cleaned and sanitised before we could use it, and our temperatures were checked before we entered the store. It felt really weird leaving the house and seeing all of the empty shops. The Carrefour closest to our house is actually inside a shopping mall, so we had to walk through the mall to get to Carrefour – every single shop is closed and there is red tape cordoning off certain areas in the mall.
After we finished our shopping, we came straight back home and unpacked! We have been really enjoying cooking ever since the lockdown has come into place. Normally, when we are flying, we usually only have a day or two here in Dubai, and that is mostly spent sleeping and resting so ordering food is the best option. However now, we have so much free time, we have been cooking every day. Here are some of our favourite meals…
After lunch, I normally try and do something productive like clean up or tidy the house. We have been spending a lot more time on the balcony so I decided to give it a big clean up as it was really dusty before. I would love to make it look more pretty with some lights, plants and a little table and chairs, but it’s too hot to sit out there in the day!
Every day, I enter the ‘What’s On Dubai’ Instagram page competition where you can win free food delivery items! It’s a fun little competition and it’s the highlight of my day to see whether I can get the answers right (a bit sad but it passes the time). On one of the days, I actually won a prize and got a free pizza making kit from a company called ‘MixnMatch’ – it was delicious and tastes even better when it’s free!!
I then normally call home and catch up with my mum and sister. Most video calling apps are blocked in Dubai, but recently I’ve started using ‘Houseparty’ and it works perfectly! It has been nearly 2 years since I have been in Dubai, and all the apps and VPN’s I downloaded never worked, but I’m so glad I have finally found something that works. You can also talk with lots of people at the same time and play games which is really fun.
Then in the evening, we sometimes go on a walk around the car park (as it’s the only open space that we can walk around) or we will just stay in and watch Netflix. We are still watching Ozark which I absolutely love. It took us a while to get into it, but now we are both hooked and nearly finished season 3. I love to sit out on the balcony in the evening as it is completely silent and there are no cars or people outside. There are always police cars patrolling, and we have seen them stop a people on a few occasions (probably telling them to go home!).
We then normally sleep around 10 or 11pm. That is one thing I do not miss about flying – the constant jet lag and irregular sleeping patterns! I am so glad that I have got my sleeping under control and I feel so much better for it.
And there we have it, another lockdown quarantine routine! Every day kind of rolls into the next, but I can’t believe how quickly the days go. My last flight was nearly a month ago now. I never thought that London flight would be my last in so long.
Thanks for reading.
Kerry May xo