Amer Braik lives and works at a desert resort, where he is often outside in the dunes with guests. The activities coordinator at Qasr Al Sarab talks about how he spends a typical day at work.
I wake up to be at the hotel swimming pool around 6am. I do swimming exercises early in the morning with my colleagues for about one hour and a half. It is necessary for us since most of our work involves physical activities and we need a high level of fitness and strength. Not only that, I do swimming every day to be ready to participate in sport events and competition such as Abu Dhabi International Triathlon, which I competed in last March.
Being an activities coordinator, I start my work at the office organising the activities agenda, allocating guides, attending meeting with the hotel management and training the guides in a regular basis to improve our operational and performance.
Even though we offer the same activities every day, it is always interesting to be in the desert and share the experience with different people from different cultures and nationalities. I enjoy explaining the history of the area by walking in the valleys and on the dunes, riding the camels and talking about the wildlife, vegetations and desert tribes' lifestyle. All the information and stories I share with my guests … make people forget about the heat and enjoy the weather as part of the experience.
The last activity in the morning starts at 11. Usually it's a short activity because of the heat, [such as] "meet the camel" for children. We take them down to the camel farm, they can take pictures and the guides can tell them information about the camels.
We have a break until 3.30 or 4.
We run all the activities, like the camel ride, desert bashing, mountain biking. We have a desert walk at sunset. We climb the dunes. The highest dune around the hotel is about 120 or 130 metres. It's a little bit hard for some people, so sometimes we suggest a soft walk. Weekends are the busiest days at work.
I leave. Sometimes I play football with my friends. And as I usually arrive late at home, I tend to spend the evening socialising with others, watching movies or listening to music. The interesting thing about my life is that I can't wait to take a holiday to be in the city. But once I reach the city I miss the quietness of the desert. The precious thing about living in the desert is it keeps my mind clear and keeps my body healthy and relaxed.
* Neil Parmar