Neil Pasricha thinks you can find awesomeness anywhere, anytime. The Canadian lifestyle guru, who started a blog called 1000awesomethings.com, was at Manarat Al Saadiyat on Wednesday spreading his optimism at a Positive Thinking Seminar and showing that the world is full of simple pleasures. Before the show, he shared with us 10 awesome things about Abu Dhabi heís found in just four days here.
1. The feeling of scrunching sand in your toes
Earlier this afternoon, I went to the beach, and the sand in my toes was a very awesome thing. After wearing shoes and socks, thereís this great feeling of all the miniscule pebbles of sand rubbing and giving you a million-pebble foot massage.
2. Floating in salt water makes me a better swimmer
The ocean is as hot as a hot tub. And Iím a very bad swimmer, but the awesome thing for me is, in salt water, I can float. In Toronto, the options for swimming are a pool or Lake Ontario, and you canít float in either.
3. The sun is everywhere
I know people complain about the weather here, but the truth is youíre lucky to have sun, to have warmth. Itís awesome to feel that on your face and your body.
4. Invisible walls of air conditioning hitting you in the face
Another beautiful thing about the heat is, it makes us feel extra awesome when we step out of it. There is that moment of entering a taxi or going into a hotel or restaurant where you say ďOh my gosh, Iíve suddenly just been air-breezed and I feel like a new man.
5. A varied multi-culture cuisine, from grape leaves to rizotto to hamburgers
People in most cities donít appreciate what theyíre missing. But when you go out for food here, people say ďDo you want Chinese? Do you want Lebanese? Do you want Indian? Do you want American?Ē If you want your Starbucks fix, you can do it, but if you want authentic, fresh hummus with olive oil and lemon, it is there. Itís awesome.
6. The chance of bumping into anyone from any country in the world
This is one of the most multi-cultural places in the world. I hear almost every language in my hotel lobby; I went to the gym and the guy who gave me a juice was from Munich; he is here learning hotel management because he can do it quicker here. Youíve got some young people from everywhere excited to learn and coming to this beautiful city. Thatís an awesome thing.
7. Eyeball-popping buildings
Yesterday I visited a friend in the worldís tallest circular skyscraper (Aldar Building). I see the plans for the Louvre and Guggenheim and I see buildings even like the one weíre in now. They resonate with creativity and exuberence and passion. Where else but in one of the fastest and most exciting places on earth would you see that? Around the world, there are too many square and grey buildings. There arenít as many experiments with design. By experimenting here, weíre learning about architecture and engineering. Itís nice to be on the vanguard of civilization!
8. Counting cranes out of your hotel window
I love counting cranes out of any window; so far my record is 13. Itís amazing to see the amount of development here.
9. The fact I can get fruits and vegetables here in juice form
Thereís something about fresh juice in this place. Everywhere I go, itís like ďWould you like some fresh juice?Ē Fresh squeezed carrot juice? I love carrot juice! Iíve had avocado juice, mango juice, strawberry juice; I feel like Iím just drinking vitamins.
10. The people and the place
Meeting so many incredible UAE people at this event and others. And planning my next trip back as soon as I get home.
See Oasis as it was printed here.