I recently had the opportunity to attend the Architectural Biennale 2014 in Venice. Opting to travel from Abu Dhabi, I realised it was a multiple transportation option.
After the long flight to Malpensa Airport in Italy, I had to catch a train to Milan Central. Changing the platforms and hopping on to a fast train to Venice, I could relish the scenic beauty of the Italian countryside.
The place I wanted to visit was accessible only by water taxis. Stopping in between various boat stations, it was exciting to see people getting in and out at each places.
Once at my hotel, it was a different feeling. The scenic view from the window overlooking the canals and watching the gondolas take tourists through narrow water lanes were a treat to watch.
As days passed by, I started missing some things. The routine had changed and my desire to get some Indian food, the small items we get from our super and mega marts, started growing.
I was not successful due to time constraints and non-availability of the restaurants and shops that served them.
I remembered the UAE and felt that expatriates in the country are blessed as there are easy options available to make everyone feel at home, whether it is food, dress or any other.
My thoughts were concurred by an Indian couple from Belgium visiting Venice with their little boy, who was keen to have rice, idly and sambar every day.
It was the partial realisation of a big dream. As the saying goes, if you dream, dream big, I was silently and consistently putting my efforts to rekindle the memories of the volcano fountain in Abu Dhabi.
The Architecture Biennale 2014 was officially opened on June 5 and the UAE pavilion stood out by displaying the right blend of modern and ancient architectural history of the UAE.
The curatorial team with the blessings of Sheikha Salama Foundation has done a great job.
Accepting and attending the opening ceremony also was an opportunity to meet several contributors who worked to make the UAE pavilion worth the visit for those interested in architecture and history.
The Venice biennale will run till Nov.23. Why not plan Venice as your holiday destination this year?
Train, boats, lovely canals and countryside and now the UAE pavilion in biennale.
I had an opportunity to attend a forum “Big Achievements. Early Starts” conducted by the Salama Bint Al Nahyan Foundation. The five youth achievers, Abdul Muqeet Abdul Mannan, Adeeb Al Blooshi, Cameron Oliver, Dubai Abulhoul and Hamda Al Bana were honoured.
They made individual presentations to the audience and followed it up with a one-to-one conversation. They talked about the rationale behind their ideas, how they accomplished them and the difficulties they faced.
All of them were crystal clear about their chosen path and had definite vision for their life ahead.
It also highlighted that these children are definitely an asset to the society and inspire many others as they progressed ahead.
No wonder, the forum opened up the hidden wealth of the nation – that is the “youth.” All those who attended left with confidence that the leaders of the country are rightly investing in local talents with a vision far ahead to make the UAE stand tall and proud among the nations of the world.
Gulf Today, Short Take Dt. 22nd February 2014
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