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Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Desert Safari and the Belly Dance


Dubai is an exotic place and one that is not constrained by rigid Islamic rhetoric. It's a refreshing place where the ruler His Highness Sheik Mohammed al Maktoum has ushered in a liberal society that embraces the secular ideals of Islam. He has as a sign of his greatness also permitted a gurudwara in Dubai at Jebel Ali about 25 km from the city centre.
One other aspect of the liberal atmosphere is the belly dance. This is peculiar to the Arab culture and consists of a young woman dancing before a gathering dressed in long loose skirt that is slit at the sides, to get an excellent view of the legs for the viewers. In addition the girls naval and waist is bare with the skirt tied low down the hips to give an excellent view of her midriff. Normally girls also while doing the belly dance wear a sleeve less blouse or a skimpy one with just straps to hold it in place. The dance consists of the girl dancing and undulating her hips to the accompaniment of music, mostly Arabic. Sometimes the dancers will gyrate to the tune of Hindi songs as well. Most of the girls doing the belly dance are from Lebanon, Egypt or Syria. But sometimes girls from India are also inducted to take part in the Belly dance.
The belly dance is normally the last item in a desert Safari and the entire tour with the Belly dance comes in a package and costs anything from 150-200 Dirhams. It is better to book in advance and also get a good seat in the land rover The desert safari kicks off with a drive though the sand dunes in a land rover and after a tortuous, all the tourists will converge to a Bedouin village.
Here Alcohol is also available on payment and a sumptuous buffet is laid out with roasted meats. Its excellent fare and after you have eaten, the belly dance commences. It’s a lovely sight to see the girl dancing and gyrating her hips and in the process giving an excellent view of her thighs and legs. This is the last item and after that the visitors are driven back to their hotels. Some dancers can get daring and allow the loose skirt to slide down as well with a tantalizing view of a dances in a semi nude condition. Such belly dancers cost more than normal. A belly dance is the piece de resistance of the evening and not to be missed.
When in Dubai or the UAE one can book a desert Safari in advance. But make sure that the belly dance is part of the programme as many desert safaris’ so not have the belly Dance, but will charge you the same amount. At the Bedouin village take a vantage seat as the belly dance is done in the centre of a small arena with men and women sitting all around on the carpet laid out with cushions and rugs. Sit comfortably as the belly dance can go up to 30 minutes. You can relish a mug of beer while watching the girl display her wares and art. But remember that Alcohol is not part of the all inclusive charge for the Safari and has to be paid for in hard cash there. Once the Belly dance is over the signal for the end of the Desert safari is announced and all go back to their land rovers to travel back to their respective homes and hotels