Compared to its mature sibling to the west, D*bai is the younger, profligate brother, chomping on a cigar, a girl under each arm. I admit, so far I like the cigar chomper better. The logic is clearer. The buildings are much more impressive. Here is a good read on “him”.
However, there are downsides to being a spendthrift. As everyone knows, “he” had to be bailed out by older brother during the financial crisis. Also, developers are not really thinking much about infrastructure as they rush madly to build their towers, and the result is the same as it always is: there’s shit in the water. The septic systems just aren’t designed for all these people. Parents keep their kids away from public fountains.
Later that evening I had dinner with a few nice people, including my friend Bobby Worth, who was just back from Iran and was filing this story for the Times about the Iranian effort to rebrand the Arab Spring as an “Islamic Awakening.” All the talk over dinner was about gender relations in the Middle East, the fundamental question, it seems, the one that affects everything. Religion and politics are ways of dealing with the gender issues. More on that later.