I got out of bed twice to adjust the curtains, thinking that the flashes of light into the bedroom must be coming from the roof of the Al Wahda building. The building is two or three kilometres from here and this flashing has never happened before, but it is an enormous building, its towers now being finished one by one and its apartments helping to ease the city’s accommodation shortage. Who knows what light show they might one night start projecting into our bedroom.

‘What is that?’ I said to the mister after the fourth flash. He hadn’t noticed.

A thunderclap clapped, loud and close.

‘It was lightning.’

A dog started to bark, something started to hit against our bedroom window. I got out of bed and held the curtain a little way back. It was rain. Hitting our window and falling onto our lawn.

As the rain and the temperature fall (only thirty degrees forecast for today), life in Abu Dhabi becomes much simpler. Sitting in the playground after school or in our courtyard after tea, the breeze weaves the evocative magic that all breezes weave. I made a descriptive list once of all of my happiest memories, and you know, the greater percentage of those descriptions included a breeze.

It had rained the night before, 120 kilometres down the road in Dubai. I heard about it on facebook and rang the mister who was staying the night in his apartment there to avoid a mid-week commute.

‘Is it raining?’ I asked him. ‘I heard it’s raining.’

‘I don’t know,’ he said. ‘I’m in the Mall of the Emirates. All I can see is snow.’

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Lads at Ski Dubai, Mall of the Emirates