National Day

The United Arab Emirates came into being in 1971. Prior to that they were called the Trucial States under a treaty with Britain. In December of 1971 six of the now seven Emirates formed a nation. Bahrain and Qatar were almost involved in this federation but chose to be independent.

Celebrating on the Corniche awaiting a jet show.
The cars are highly decorated for the occasion
The air shows were spectacular
Celebrating with a colleague

The first six Emirates to join the union were Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Umm al Quwain, Ajman and Fujairah. Ras al Khaimah joined in 1972. The Emirates were brought together by Sheik Zayed bin Sultan al Nahyan who passed away in 2004. He is considered the Father of the country and you will see his countenance everywhere.

Every year on December 2nd, the country celebrates National Day. There is a tremendous build up to this day and events everywhere.

Preparation at the university
Enjoying National Day with colleagues
Me sharing chocolates
National attire
Family at the University celebration
Wife and I. I think our first celebration. We didn’t know what we were in for.
Chocolates
One of the malls lit up
The 48th year of the country being celebrated. This display in front of our hotel.
Wife and twins at Sheik Zayed Mosque
Daughter dressed up in National colors

In the early 1900s, much of the economy was based on pearl diving. In the 1960s, oil was discovered and that changed everything dramatically.

Buildings often adorned with flags
National Day celebration at my university with Sheik Zayed’s portrait looking on. Emiratis are very proud of their country and they should be.
Emirati woman demonstrating how they have weaved traditionally, wearing face covering that is less common today.
My wife receiving Henna hand painting in our apartment lobby as part of the celebration.
Apartment lobby decorated for the occasion. There were activities for children and delicious, traditional foods.

The country shares borders with Oman and Saudi Arabia. Most of the country is desert and the high point is around 2000 meters.

A seafood trap transformed
Me in traditional dress with our twins
Amazing fireworks displays
Talking with the owner of our apartment, who arranged a great celebration.

The transition from being a desert living, pearl diving culture to a wealthy, super modern country built with oil money has been breathtaking. If you are interested, there is a book that is called, “Rags to Riches,” that details this amazing journey.

The twins and I
Street decorations
Me with my son. You are addressed by your first name, not your last. Thus, Mr. Jim
The first raising of the flag
Sheik Zayed, the Father of the UAE with a falcon
Mesmerising deserts and scorching heat
Emirati Flag

The UAE was a very special home for us for almost eight years. Our twins were born there and Aisha, our daughter has an Arabic name.

If you get a chance to visit I encourage you to do so. A fascinating mix of the old and the new.

Published by jimboyce44

World Traveler, Educator, Father, Husband, Son

2 thoughts on “National Day

  1. These are absolutely outstanding, Jim!

    On Sun, May 31, 2020 at 5:21 AM Jim’s Travel Culture and History Blog wrote:

    > jimboyce44 posted: ” The United Arab Emirates came into being in 1971. > Prior to that they were called the Trucial States under a treaty with > Britain. In December of 1971 six of the now seven Emirates formed a nation. > Bahrain and Qatar were almost involved in this federation ” >

    Like

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