A Small Town Girl Found Herself in Dubai

In February 2022, Danielle went to Dubai. It was her first time out of the continent of North American and she walks you through her experience. You’ll learn that her experience in Dubai was a renewing of her mindset, her ambitions, and validation that being an American is a responsibility.

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Welcome to the Crying in My Cheesecake podcast. I am Danielle, your host, and I am grateful you’re here. Today, we’re going to talk about my trip to Dubai. Oh, my gosh, guys I, it still seems like a dream. It is in April when I’m recording this and it’s been since the end of February that I was there, it’s been a whirlwind of like March has gone and anyway, it’s just been so busy in my life lately. I’m looking through my pictures as we’re talking because, and I did this on purpose as a means of memories. I didn’t want to forget anything. But it just seems like a whirlwind. I honestly did not know what Dubai was, where it was, except for the whole keeping up with the Kardashians, knowing that they went there and it looked beautiful. I had, no, I probably couldn’t have pointed out on the map. I knew it was over there and that mid in the Middle East somewhere. But I was honestly like, what the heck? So I got to go to Dubai. It was for a business trip of learning how to grow my business and scale my business for like, for my goals, like what I actually want to be able to do with Crying in my Cheesecake and all these things and the people I met, anyway, we’re not there yet. But it was a fantastic trip and I am already itching to go back, like I actually miss it. It’s, there’s not many places in this world that I have visited. Okay. First of all, I haven’t visited the world very much, let’s be honest. I think the most out of, or foreign place I’ve been as Canada.

And I think I’ve been there maybe three times, two times. That’s it, that’s the most foreign I’ve gotten. So I kind of went big for my first time actually leaving my continent. So anyway I left from our local little, teeny, tiny airport and flew into Chicago and met some friends there so we could get on the same plane. Guys, we flew Emirates airlines there. Emirates is like ridiculously luxurious, even in the economy area. Like I chose economy. Because I’m like, okay, whatever. I’m just gonna say money. I wish I had gone up, but on the way there we get to, I was reading online about Emirates that if there is no one sitting next to you, you can ask to purchase the seat next to you, so you can kind of have more room and lay down any economy. So, I was telling my friends this I’m like, well, if I can do that, and there’s nobody sitting next to me, I might as well just do that or buy the whole road, the whole three set of things. Okay guys, you know how much this is? It was only going to be like $35 a seat. So I’m like, that’s like, you know, how many thousands of dollars, less than the business class, which business class is actually first class. Again, all these things blowing my mind. So I just kind of prayed over it, and I was really nervous because I’ve never been on a plane for that long for more than like, I don’t know, four or five hours, maybe four hours, I think is the longest I’ve ever been on a plane.

And I just felt like, you know, I started feeling that anxiety of just being stuck on a teeny tiny area. I didn’t want to be, whatever. So it is continuing to praying. And then we go to check in and realize, well, Emirates doesn’t even open until 4:00 PM in Chicago. So I’m like, okay. So we sit down and just kind of whatever and we see that they’re starting to open. We get in line. And when, you know, like there was nobody, even in those seats, they didn’t charge me for those two seats next to me. But they blocked them off so I could have them. So I was able to lay down and relax my whole trip there. Now, when I got on Emirates, it was like this, when you walk in, it’s like, you know, you’re, if you get on American airlines, Southwest airlines, it’s like, it looks like you’re getting on a cattle car kind of thing, honestly, compared to this.

Getting on Emirates, the lights are beautiful. They’ve got like real music playing. You’re wanting to dance. The flight attendants are so sweet and kind, and even in economy, you get this little care bag. You get sox, you get an eye mask, you get earplugs, you get toothbrush, toothpaste, you get mouthwash. The toilets are cleaned like every 30 minutes, we got beautiful meals, all the things. It was so stinking awesome. Like you already knew it was a whole different place. Something else that was interesting. I just want to document I didn’t wear my mask at all on Emirates Airlines. At all, didn’t wear my mask in the airport, in the international terminals at all. Nobody cared, nobody even said a word. Nobody cared when you landed at the other airport. Like it wasn’t even a thing. So I’m so excited about it. I actually got to get a stamp on my, on my passport, cause I don’t know why Canada doesn’t stamp your passport. Maybe we just don’t count, but getting getting on the plane, like I said, it just is a whole nother atmosphere, a whole nother thing, and it was so comfortable and sweet and kind.

There on the backs, there were screens, you know, like flat screen TVs on the back of the airplane, and we could call each other. There was a phone that we can call each other and talk to each other. We could play video games with each other. It was actually, it was just really, really kind of cool. And we got meals, all the things we got there were, I didn’t know that there was a camera underneath the airplane. So you could actually see, where you were flying over. So our flight there, we flew from Chicago up through Canada, out past Nova Scotia went over, I don’t know it was that Greenland? Is it Greenland there? I think Greenland. And then kind of went over went over Europe and then came straight down over towards Saudi Arabia, all of that. I think we flew over Iran, not Saudi Arabia. We flew over Iran and then landed in Dubai. You guys, the Dubai airport is ridiculously beautiful.

It looks like it’s a mall. Somehow there are so many thousands and honestly like tens of thousands of people that go through this place, and They’re so efficient. It’s so efficient and something that was really cool is that Emirates will not leave you. So if you get stuck because of there’s too many people somewhere, they don’t leave you like places here do so.

Anyway, all that to say we landed Emirates. Airport was beautiful. Everything we got to ride in this beautiful ride. It was nighttime there, so it was nighttime on Tuesday. We left them on a Monday night time on a Tuesday, and we were kind of just whisked away by these drivers. And, I don’t know what the name of this is, but it looks like the, the bean kind of like the bean in Chicago, but it was with the Arabic writing on it with a hole in the middle. I don’t know what that’s called. I probably should have looked that up before I started recording, but like the architecture here was insane. It was beautiful. Like, I can’t, I can still, I can still like smell it. I can still, it looks, it looks very, I would say European, like in the United States, all the houses for the most part, all look different.

They all everybody has, it’s not like we don’t have square housing and I call that social housing. Because when you go to Canada, everything looks like square and the same and all of that. And that’s being very. That’s probably be being very prejudice or something, but it’s very different, but that’s how this place was. This place was very much like, they were all skyscrapers. You didn’t see small buildings and even the mosques were very large and elaborate and beautiful. And just like, there was attention to detail on everything. Something that I wasn’t prepared for was I figured it would be much busier than it was, and it wasn’t, it was just very low key, slow people were, except for on the roads, but people were just so genuinely kind, everybody spoke English for the most part, and you could understand them. I’m not sure they could understand the Midwest accent. But, they definitely, you know, they knew we were Americans just by looking at us, I guess it’s hard to hide, but like just the architecture was elaborate.

The people like nobody was really from there. Technically everybody just kind of either lived there for half of a year and then left during the summer because it gets too hot there. But it’s just, people were so kind people, you could let kids walk on the side of the street, they had I called them, what did I call them? Concrete playgrounds underneath bridges. So, there were playgrounds for kids underneath bridges, which I thought was interesting. And lots of moms just sitting there, hanging out, letting the kids play, kids had scooters that they would sit outside their apartment doors. Like it was just, again, it just felt really family oriented and safe.

The first night we were there, we went to an Arabic restaurant that was like literally attached to a mosque and guys delicious, like delicious. It was like a Lebanese, it reminded me of Lebanese food, but it was more Arabic, I guess, with the flavors and the breads, like Arabic bread was so good. And I don’t understand, they served french fries with everything, that was weird. The electricity was weird to me. It’s obviously much safer than ours because you actually have to turn the power on to the outlet. And obviously you need you know, what is it called? A converter thing. The water, I hated the water there. It did not work well with my body did not like my hair. The air pollution was pretty noticeable. So again, we were in a desert and I have not really ever been in a desert. And, the smell it smelled like to me, it smelled oily and which, okay. I mean, they do have oil there, right? But it smelled very oily and not like when you walk outside in the Midwest, it smells like fresh air, like almost crisp, clean air this way.

It wasn’t humid by any means. Gosh, the weather was perfect. Like you guys know if you follow me on social media, if you know me here. You know, my weather preferences are definitely like on the cooler side, this was so comfortable. It was probably seventies, eighties when we were there. But guys, the sunrise it was just the most beautiful thing.

I want to go back as I’m just looking through these pictures, I want to go back. We had a yacht cruise our first full day there. And to think that I was on a yacht, I was on a yacht. I went from one bathroom to a yacht. This yacht was just people that were so sweet, so kind, so willing to just network and meet you and get to know you. And, it was such, not an ego boost, it was a soul boost. That people were there for the right reasons to help each other out and just truly be there for one another and it was very refreshing. Nobody wanted anything from anybody else other than just an, an equal pull and tug from one another.

I got to meet Rob Sperry. I got to meet Frazer Brookes. It was really stinking cool. And is it the seven star hotel I got a bunch of the pictures of me next to that, I did not go in I’m sure I wouldn’t have even been allowed in. There was a restaurant we got turned down from because we weren’t dressed appropriate, but whatever. So we did the, there was a hotel that you could do the seven floors of food, and we could only do six of them. We kind of took a, an appetizer each of them and went through that. I’m saying this, like the sunset, like everything was just so stinking, beautiful. And some things I learned about myself there that I already knew, but some things I learned about myself is that I’m capable of more. I just need to have the right people around me to encourage me and open my eyes to the next level. And that’s something that I’ve been missing since I moved to Ohio is that I don’t have someone in my realm, like challenging me all the time.

And I don’t mean challenging me is like, like, meaning like, oh, you need to be challenged to be steadfast in your faith. I don’t have someone challenging me to think bigger or deeper, and I have to do that myself. I’ve kind of come to the conclusion that I’m having to go out and ask people specific people to point me in the right direction to kind of challenge me in new ways. And I’ve learned that I can’t stand being the smartest one in the room or the one that makes the most money or the one that is so such and such and such. Like, I don’t want to be that person. I want to be the person that can enter a room and learn. And I haven’t had that since I moved to Ohio. And that’s been hard for me. And this was the first time genuinely first time that I had felt like I had been poured into it almost five and a half years. So that’s kind of a big deal. And I literally cried. I think it was on the second day of the conference, maybe third, second day.

And one of the gals pulled me aside, her name was Nadya Melton, I will tag her below. She is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to business and she pulled me aside and just kind of said, And what is it you do? And I told her about my business about nutrition and wellness and , it’s the whole thing. I love building courses and teaching people. And she was like, you sound like a teacher, you talk like a teacher, you are a teacher and you have a voice that people can enjoy listening to you’re not too harsh, you’re not too this. Well, I’m like, I can be, but she just really poured into me in ways that I had been praying about for months, because quite frankly, business ownership is not for the faint of heart. Now, people that sell MLM products, I know that they call it their business. And while it is like, that’s their business, they don’t actually own the business. They don’t actually have to do the behind the scenes of everything. It’s it’s hard being a business owner and it’s probably probably the second or third hardest thing I’ve ever done in my whole life, because it’s easy for me to think that, oh, I just want to get up and leave. But she, I was crying because I was feeling this stagnation. I want to grow so much and I didn’t know what I needed when I needed it.

And so she sat in linked, just talked to me through my next steps as well. Like some of the other things that we had talked about and she was just so kind about it. But it was nice to have someone recognize that in me, like a multi-million dollar earner business owner seeing that in me. And I found a renewed sense of confidence that I was worth being there that I had value to bring to the table. That kind of thing, it was really awesome. And I mean, it was also something else I learned was that the middle east doesn’t eat a whole lot of protein. It was really hard, I started feeling almost sick and it wasn’t homesick. It was more like, like my cells, my body just felt so sluggish and tired and all the things.

And when they serve you chicken, it’s like, I don’t know, not even hardly four ounces. And I’m used to eating like. I’m used to eating around, I don’t know, probably eight, eight-ish ounces at least of meat at each meal. And I wasn’t getting that. So that was like starting to hit and then at lunch, one day, the first day we had lunch, I go and I saw that there was carving station and I’m like, oh my gosh. So I got like loaded up on meat and a whole chicken breast. I got red meat and I got some chicken breasts and I got potatoes and I went and sat down and I was like, I’m a happy girl. And it was so funny cause my plate was just meat and potatoes.

But that was interesting, I also learned from people how to, like I said, how to build myself into the next levels and you know, thinking about how long I was away from my kids. I didn’t, I started to get homesick that last day that we didn’t have conferences that we were there. I started to get homesick and I just wanted to be home, like when my conferences are done, I just want to go home. I get people that very easily and I think what I would want to do next time. Next time I go to Dubai, I want to take the whole family and actually spend a few weeks and explore and actually be a tourist and not work, but this is, that was something else that came to mind too.

Was that I don’t want to have to work every day of my life. I don’t want to take time away from my kids. I only get them for so long. And even when I, when they’re out of my house, I want to be able to be that mom that goes, and, you know, for my boys goes and helps their wives, my new daughters, like helping them, like just sneak it into a load of laundry, learn how to fold the laundry the way they want the laundry folded or the way they want it washed like an honoring that not even like, not even asking them for their attention, but literally just showing up and having it laundry folded sitting on the washing machine or whatever it may be. I want to be that mom that can be present. And I think that that’s. Something that I fear is that I’m turning into what I don’t want to be.

And that’s why this conference was so big for me to learn systemizing what I do. So I am not constantly pulled at or constantly in one-to-one calls or all of those things. And I know some of my clients listen to the podcast, but I adore my job, I adore what I get to do. When I’m done with the one-to-one calls, I love seeing the changes in people, but what I don’t love is just how much time it’s taking away from my family and how much I’m missing. It’s really pulling on my own health and my own kids. So learning how in my kids, my relationship with my kids, and I think learning how to systemize and not repeat things or repeat myself and actually use my time wisely is something that I learned that I’m starting to implement.

I did have some awesome food. Like I said I went to go see the Burj Khalifa went up. I don’t remember how far. I don’t remember how far I did go to the Burj Khalifa, which is now the second tallest building in the world. It used to be the first tallest. But it was beautiful. The skyline it’s just beautiful. I don’t even know how to say it. Being able to be in the Persian Gulf, the Persian Gulf people loved it, loved every bit of it. I was glowing went to this place called, oh gosh, what was this place called? It was a brunch place. C’est la Vie, I think we went to C’est la Vie and the views from C’est la Vie were beautiful. Absolutely loved everything about our trip and Dubai, but I’m a small town girl, one stoplight, a one-stop light town that didn’t even hardly need the stoplight.

And I was in Dubai. Oh, and, we were at the airport and I peed in what are they called? A bomb, a bomb site, which is where you just kind of hover over and you pee in this hole. I peed in one of those, I actually did it. I couldn’t hold it anymore, so I did. That was exciting. When we came back, we, because of the Ukraine and Russia situation, we actually couldn’t fly back the same path that we came. We flew back, we went far east and then flew up straighten so we went straight east from Dubai and then went straight up north over Moscow and then went over the north pole. It was like negative 94 point something degrees. It got really cold, even inside the cabin and went, so it was like night negative 94. We went over the north pole. I got to see the the glaciers. I could see that on the camera, underneath the plane. Then we flew over the top of Canada and then straight down to chicago to get back to the states. I cannot tell you again, just how awesome it was to go and to enjoy. And if you have the opportunity to go see Dubai, I would definitely recommend going.

So, yeah, I learned so much about myself, so much encouragement was fulfilled and I would definitely go again. All right guys, I will see you next time.

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hey, i’m Danielle

I love Jesus. I love my family. And I get joy from having a front row view of people growing toward their goals because of what I’ve taught.

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