The locals celebrated their 38th National Day (commemorating the unification of 7 Emirates into 1 independent nation of Emirates) in their usual inimitable fashion! Emiratis love their country and their leaders and they love to celebrate, so on National Day all these things come together. The Corniche in Abu Dhabi become an unofficial DIY parade, with people who have spent 1000s of Dirhams decorating their cars driving up and down the street. There is a real party atmosphere which everyone joins in with.
This year there was much made about a massive firework display that would be set off from 25 points around the city and from barges on the waterfront. They started an hour late (at 9.30pm) by which time many people, especially those with young children had already gone, or started going home. When eventually they came, they were the biggest let down ever! Most towns back home would have better displays on Nov 5th. I don’t know what happened – maybe it’s the credit crisis!