United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates consists of seven independent city-states including Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah.  It’s a country about the size of the state of Maine, 80% desert, but also filled with fertile stretches on it’s coastal plains and rich palm-filled oases.

I was invited into the UAE Embassy to celebrate the Zayed Foundation Energy Grant program and hear from some of the past winners.  The Zayed Foundation gives a number of prizes to encourage the creation of alternative energy solutions.

The embassy was breathtaking: towering white marble with a dome that looked like it came from some fairy tale.  Inside the soaring lobby, the dome had a stained glass insert that bathed the space in magical light.  The combination of modern elegance and classical touches, such as the inlaid marble floor, worked beautifully.  Each room was filled with magnificent art pieces.

After hearing the speakers, hors d’oeuvres were passed — salmon, crab cakes, and rolled pita sandwiches, followed by trays of delicious desserts.

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