I wake up in my clothes on the bed. Backpack beside me. Peter must be on the couch. The 40 beers we drank at Barasti last night aren’t feeling overly fantastic this morning. Argggh Budweiser tummy.
I start to get up. Go to the kitchen to grab some water. Peter passes by and goes to the room. It’s quarter after 9. “Gonna lie down for another 15 minutes”, “We have to pack and get to the Burj…” Door shuts. This is gonna turn into a race. It always does.
Michaela is up and ready, she’s on Peter’s case, “You’re gonna miss your reservation timeslot at the Burj”, “Make me some toast and cheese!” Sheeesh, I reference the New Inn bartender from the other day, “You forgot to say ‘bitch!'”, “Or ‘please’? Peter really? really?”, “Make my toast you dirty slut!!” The hangover sillies are fierce today.
I get a message from Queenie. She’s getting a refund on the computer we bought. She’s fed up with it. We had a brand new laptop stolen upon delivery. Queenie took the day off work to wait and sign for it. The tracking status switched to delivered and signed for while she sat there. Went outside, nothing there. Someone either knew that it was going to be delivered and at what time, or the delivery guy was in on it. There’s a forum with dozens of people in it claiming the same problem. Someone else signing for their package. Reddit posts, the works. Always top of the line computers. It’s bullshit. The system is totally compromised somewhere. Now we’re dealing with Dell and FedEx trying to get it replaced. But it’s been weeks and very little communication or help so fuck that. Refund it. Super frustrating.
Peter and I finally get our shit together and Michaela runs us out to the mall attached to the Burj Khalifa. Pretty cool.
We get dropped off in the basement parking. Ok, we’ve got to find the entrance to this place pronto if we wanna have time to see it before rushing to the airport. We’re 45 minutes late at this point. Whoa this is an enormous high end mall. Ok let’s get moving. Hmmmmm where is this thing? We speed walk through the mall passed the perfume and chocolate vendors. What the hell? I don’t see signs for it. I think we just did a full loop and got back to the same place.
The irony of not being able to find the entrance to the tallest building on the planet is not lost on us.
We come around a corner and there is a multi-story aquarium in the mall all of the sudden. What the fuck, this is nuts. Come around the side and it’s just huge. There are sharks and Manta rays in there? Dubai is bonkers.
We finally spot a sign for the Burj. We have to go down a level? Ok we’re on track. Just an hour late. Ticket Dude doesn’t care. We go through some metal detectors and enter a room with a scale replica of the tower. The disc it sits on reacts to your movements and touch. It’s really cool. You can send a wave of color at it and watch the tower change shape or texture.
Oh, looks like I got through the metal detectors with a Carlsberg bottle opener from last night in my back pocket.
We get to the elevator. Elevator Dude tells us that they are the fastest elevators in the world. 9 meters per second up. Ten on the way down. We exit to a line where they take pictures of you and then try to get you to pay for them after. We go through the motions but it’s 50 quid for a pic. No thanks.
The view is incredible over the skyscrapers, crisscrossing highways and off to the desert in the distance. You can see where they’re building the World Island. The other skyscrapers look mini from way up here.
There are a few digital telescopes that you can interact with. They give you info on the buildings and landscape features you point them at. They also change the view on the screen from clear day to night to historic views. Cool idea.
Around the corner are some virtual reality tours of some sort but I think you need a special pass for those.
We’re special but have no pass
We go around the tower snapping pics, but now it’s time for the real reason we’re at the Burj Khalifa. I head to the restroom. I’m going to demolish Agent Getz’s record for the highest altitude, non-airplane shit. He ‘logged’ it at the Ozone bar in Hong Kong, the highest bar in the world. I failed at the Tokyo Skytree. The building was taller but not the shitters. But now! Squatting in the tallest building in the world, this shit will be untoppable!
I post a pic straight to Drisdelle’s Facebook from the stall, tag the location and write “Good luck topping this shit.” Satisfied with the results I take several towels, stuff them down until the toilet clogs and upper deck the shitter as per our custom.
Good stuff what’s Peter up to. Ahh he’s there on the floor.
We go down a floor and do the rounds. The view is stupendous. Narcopiggy takes a moment to enjoy it
It’s bright out on the deck. And hot
We help a couple out with some Burj pics. Peter’s stance lets them know he’s taking it seriously
And that should do it. Burj Khalifa – Check! Tallest building on planet Earth.
We head back down the high speed elevator and meet up with Michaela and Kelvin at the food court. Just enough time to pound some lunch before heading to the airport. What are we gonna get? MacDonald’s? Seriously MacDonald’s? “You can get doner and gyro anywhere, but you can’t get MacDonald’s Dubai branch anywhere but Dubai.” Good point actually. McArabia chicken it is.
We plop our food on the table and Kelvin pushes his chair back. He can’t stand McDonald’s. Ate it for 2 years straight in China. Now the smell makes him want to throw up. The McArabia is good though! Wtf, I guess it’s the tzatziki sauce. That’s a surprise.
Alright we’re out. Airport run ——> Go!
We drive passed a new building that is going to be a library in the shape of an open Koran. Get to the airport in no time. On the drop-off curb we give our thanks to Michalea and Kelvin for being such good hosts and tour guides, a place to crash and great food. Hugs hugs bye bye, grab our bags and head inside.
Oh right the airport is huge. We get through security in no time and over to the gate. We hand Gate Dude our tickets and we’re through to the plane ramp. Gate dude yells out, “Peter’s going to JoBurg!” behind us. Haha that’s great. We get to the plane doors and the stewardess asks to see our tickets to direct us to our seats. “Love your hair, hmmm you look good”, is this girl hitting on me? She hands back my ticket and I hold it up, “Well, you know where to find me.” Probably the smoothest flirt comeback I’ve ever had.
Ahhh man, last flight before our massive Africa adventure really begins. Our old Mongol Rally pal, Waldo, is picking us up at the airport. Can’t wait to catch up. Gonna spend a couple of days with him and then drive across all of South Africa to Cape Town to meet the other detectives for the SASS. Things are getting exciting now! Highly unlikely anything will go wrong..