Samm: We’ve been here for three and a bit years now, and at first, I wasn’t sure if it was the right place for us. But the rent was within our price range, so we thought we’d give it a shot. Now we love it. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else in Dubai.
What made you change your mind?
Samm: Lots of things. Now that the rents have dropped so much, it’s just another good reason to stay where we are. Our location is excellent, and Mirdif has a really nice community feel to it. We live on a small compound, and our neighbours are fantastic, so you could never be lonely here. Next door, there is an elderly couple, and they act like surrogate grandparents to the children. We are great friends. I also have a good friend living on the compound who has three children. We have a lot in common for obvious reasons, so there’s always someone to have a cup of tea or a playdate with.
Sophie: I love the swimming pool. I can swim really well with just one armband. Dylan still needs two armbands cos he’s only little.
Dylan: That’s true. I need two. But I play really good football. I can hit the ball with a bat. WHACK! (demonstrates with his arm) Just like that.
What about the local amenities?
Samm: We’re spoilt really. We have three really great parks; Mirdif Park, Uptown Mirdif Park and Mushrif Park. Then we have all the malls – Mirdif City Centre, Dubai Festival City and Arabian Centre are just a stone’s throw away. And there’s a great Spinneys at Uptown too. My husband likes Dubai Mall, which is fairly close as well.
Sophie: I love the crocodile place.
Samm: The Rainforest Café at Dubai Mall. We take them there for a treat occasionally. Usually it’s food court grub for us though – with three children, you tend to do whatever’s easiest.
Dylan: I like the monkeys there – and the thunderstorms!
What about schools?
Samm: Sophie goes to JESS Arabian Ranches, which you would think it a bit of a schlep. But actually, it’s just 20 minutes drive up the Emirates Road. And Dylan goes to Emirates British Nursery which is within walking distance.
Ah. Walking. Can you do any of that in Mirdif?
Samm: Unfortunately, not as much as we would like to, as there is a shortage of pavements. But when the weather’s hot, it’s too uncomfortable to walk anywhere anyway, and you just get used to taking the car everywhere. More walkways would be nice though.
So, do you think you’ll stay for a while?
Samm: I don’t see why not. After all, we only came for one year, and we’ve already been here longer than we’d planned. We love Dubai because it’s so safe, and we love Mirdif because it’s become so much of a home to us. So far, so good!
Rainforest café (Dubai Mall)
Uptown Mirdif Park
Uptown Primary 04 288 6270
Emirates British Nursery 04 288 9222
Dubai London Clinic (DFC) 04 232 5751