This is the time of the year when dates ripen on the palms and are harvested. There are literally millions of palm trees (last estimate I could find was in 1997 when a survey found 40 million). Many of them are in farms for the commercial production of dates, but lots are just lining roads or public parks etc. There are date palms lining many of the highways and at this time of year it is very common to see people pulled over onto the hard shoulder to climb the barrier and pick dates. Rather like at home where we might go picking blackberries, it is perfectly acceptable to pick enough for your own consumption - the only difference is that we would get fined if we stopped on the motorway to do so!
So, taking my "when in Rome..." stance, I stopped and picked some dates on my way home from Dubai the other day. It seems I have picked ones that are not ripe yet mind you, so I am hoping they will.
For a guide to date palms in UAE context - see here .