Strangely blown away – April 2015

I don’t know the cause of the strange events.

Was it the full moon (a Red Moon at that)? Or perhaps it was the fact that in the days before, I watched two trippy movies which were challenging reality. First it was all five dimensions of Interstellar, then Fight Club. (I started Inception also, though I dreamed I was too tired and couldn’t watch more than 20 mins).

I guess it begun on Thursday when Dubai was subjected to one of the worst dust storms I’ve seen in my six years here. While I was driving, visibility was down to 10-20 metres.

After work when I got home, the front courtyard immediately looked different. The little tent we bought for Owen was missing.   The snake I had in there to scare the kids was now lying exposed on the concrete path.

Me & Owen, happy days in the tent

Me & Owen, happy days in the tent

My first thought was someone must have stolen it. Though, anyone interested in stealing kids toys had many more, and simpler opportunities. They had all been left where they were. It seemed quite clear, despite our courtyard having a 6 foot brick wall right around it, the heavy wind must have blown the tent outside.

I looked out in the street and in the neighbours’ yards, but it was nowhere to be seen. It was a shame, though I wasn’t too upset about it. The boys wouldn’t miss it for some time, and it was relatively cheap from IKEA.

The next day was Good Friday. I went to a friend’s place for an Easter BBQ. Everything was going quite well, until the lady at the end of the table turned and started choking. It was clear she was struggling, when she became quite frantic and ran off into the house. Her husband was nursing their baby, so I jumped up and grabbed the little one. And the guy chased his wife in the house, immediately starting the Heimlich Manoevre when he caught her. What a terrifying sight. After 4 or 5 seconds it seemed to do the trick. He thankfully didn’t show us the evidence, but claimed it was a 5 – 10 centimetre piece of roast lamb.

The awkwardness took a little while to leave, then the afternoon beers were flowing nicely. Before it got too late, I caught a taxi home. I focused my gaze at the passing neighborhood I could see out the taxi’s window. It minimised the sensation of the world spinning. All of a sudden though, I couldn’t believe my eyes! I quickly sat upright and squinted my eyes slightly. Outside, pinned against a small, simple wire fence was the same red, striped material of Owen’s tent. But this didn’t make sense. It was on the other side of my neighborhood – so far from my place.


Perhaps a bit forcefully, I told the taxi driver to stop right there and then. He must have thought I was needing to be sick. I opened the door and ran back to what I thought I had seen, and it was proven, I did see it. Here was the kids tent that I last saw in our place, according to Google maps, over 2 kilometres away.

The tent's end spot near Hessa Street

The tent’s end spot near Hessa Street

I guess the shape made it climb like a hot air balloon. And perhaps it didn’t fly in a straight line, so it could have travelled even further.

Imagine if Owen was inside at the time!?

Tent flight

Where I found the tent, 2.22872 km away from our courtyard

I folded it as best I could to fit it into the taxi’s back seat, and returned home. Most of the way I was still giggling in disbelief.

The next day I was keen to check I had not experienced a dream. Nope, the tent had returned – now with three skateboards inside to weigh it down.