Monday, December 19
Sky over Iran, 15:30
The three of us left the house for the airport at about 5:55. We sat down in the Finnair lounge at about 6:40 and Naa told us that she normally has three breakfasts on early shift: one when she leaves the house, one when the kitchen opens, and one just before she starts her shift. She told us this as she tucked into her third plate of sausages.
On the plane Naa immediately fell asleep. Twenty minutes after take-off the steward began to serve us lunch, announcing that the plane flew on Dubai time. As we ate Naa woke up, looked at our cod and mashed potato, pulled a face, and ordered blueberry pie and champagne. Irma has obviously taught her well.
At a time called 11:05 in one time zone or another we hear an announcement telling us that we will soon pass over the desert of Iran. The pilot tells us to look out of the window. I look out of the window. I see desert-like scenery. As a trusting sort of person I believe that I can see the desert of Iran. I ask for another champagne. Irma photographs the champagne and I photograph the desert. I have the window seat.
We will land at Dubai on time and, to our great surprise, it will take less than ten minutes to get through immigration. We will arrive at the Star Metro hotel less than an hour after landing and find ourselves sitting in a nearby restaurant called Reema Al Badwadi thirty minutes later.
After eating, and a brief shopping expedition, everyone will declare themselves tired. By 20:30 (or 18:30 as we call it in Helsinki) we will climb into our beds and I, for one, will fall asleep in seconds.