It's a bit after 10:30 pm and I'm relaxing at my hotel. In a little bit, I am going to finish packing and try to get a few hours of sleep before I wake up and head to the airport, board EK 211 and fly back to Houston. I'm not looking forward to the sixteen-hour flight - I've already resigned myself to the fact that I'm going to get a middle seat and that I'm going to be surrounded by screaming infants - but I am eager to get back home.
As of right now, I do not know when I will be returning to Dubai; I'm hoping that it won't be until after the New Year, if at all. Since April, I’ve cumulatively spent 120 days either on the ground here in Dubai or in transit. I’ve certainly done my part but I’ve simply had enough for one calendar year. It's time for me to be home for the holidays.
That being said, the weather during this rotation has been amazingly pleasant. The skies have been clear and it even rained one morning earlier this week. If I do have to come back here in January (or - ugh - even before then), at least I'll have that to look forward to.