At the shared taxi stand in Abu Dhabi - and other Emirati cities like Sharjah, Fujairah and Al Ain for that matter - taxi drivers yell "Dubai! Dubai! Dubai!" to let potential passengers know their destination. And of course the other drivers shout out their destinations too. But there are always more taxis heading to Dubai and they always fill faster. During our first couple of years in Abu Dhabi, after we moved there in '98, we'd catch shared taxis to Dubai a lot so it seemed. At least once a month or so, to eat out, take in the local sights, stay at a nice hotel, and of course, go shopping. In those days Abu Dhabi only had one shopping mall and Dubai had three decent ones and a few smaller shopping arcades in the suburbs. Once we'd piled into the taxi, we'd each hand over our Dh10 (less than US$3) to the driver for the 90 minute ride then he'd speed off down at a million miles an hour. Crammed in those taxis I learned a lot about the people who'd chosen to live in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. I didn't speak Arabic, Hindi, Farsi or Urdu, but I could tell a lot about them by the way they dressed, the things they carried (or didn't), their body language, their eyes, and of course they're smiles... whether a Pakistani driver, Afghani labourer, Sri Lankan maid, or Indian bank clerk, they'd all come here to work, make money, and send it home to a spouse or family to pay for their kids to go to school or university, to buy a house, to one day start a business. Terry and I weren't there just for the money; for us, it was more about the cultural experience and the travel. But all of us were there to make our dreams a reality. And for most of us, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, like fairy godmothers, granted our wishes. For me, the good news stories over the years have far outweighed the bad. My Dubai is a very different one to that I read about in the papers. So I've decided to start a series on this blog called 'Dubai Dubai Dubai! Some tales of a city...' and every now and again I'm going to share a story or two, take you on a ride, and show you my Dubai... are you coming?