In 2003 Julie and I headed to Dubai for the Dubai Open Tennis tournament.
It's not that we flew over from Ireland for it. We were living in Abu Dhabi at the time and it was just an hour up the road!
As was typical of the Arabs, they organised a world class tournament, paid the top tennis players a fortune to take part, but unfortunately overlooked one little detail. The locals had little interest in tennis and the ex-pat population was very limited. It was being beamed out all over the world, so it wouldn't look good for them if the stadium was empty. So one of the Sheikhs bought all the tickets....and gave them out for free!
I always find it strange that the games of tennis and cricket that need fine weather to be played, were developed in England that has almost as much rain as we have! No fear of it being "rained off" in Dubai.
Despite the fact that tickets were free, the place was still practically empty!
Thirteen years have quickly passed by. Julie and I are still attending sporting events but perhaps in not as glamorous a setting. We both took part in the Great Dublin Bike Ride this year. This time I had to photobomb to be let in the shot with herself and her Dad!