After Germany, Switzerland and Netherlands for work I took a few days vacation. Fate would have it that the setting was in the Middle East. I flew through Doha, Qatar to Dubai, UAE. Dubai in many senses is the most extreme city in the world. The unparallelled vision and speculation of investment, business, tourism, multi-culturism and infra-structure is making (and has made) Dubai a window of the World's future. From the world's tallest building, indoor snow-skiing facility, outrageous architecture, huge man-made islands, and the world's best hotels are sure to keep Dubai as a target of attention for quite awhile. It is clearly a place of best, biggest, fastest and most outrageous. It is not a city looking backwards, but one of moving forward at astonishing speed.

Swimming in the Persian Gulf was a treat. It is the saltiest place I have ever swam. The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world and really dwarfs all other tall buildings at 828 Meters (2707 feet). The new One World Trade Center in the US stands at 1,776' (541 m). I have a suspicion that the Burj Khalifa has been designed to allow expansion as other buildings get built and approach a competing height. I think the footprint of the building has been designed to be expanded to increase the overall height someday. Fascinating place for sure.


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