I just needed to get away for a little bit. From the grey, the jostling, the constant busy-ness of it all. So I did a very English thing and googled 'Winter sun holiday'. Options are pretty limited this time of year. The most tempting of them all is the Carribean. But flights were a whopping £800 each and the distance was just too much. So I settled for Abu Dhabi. 7 hour flight, consistent 30 degree days and some much needed beach time. Throw in an awesome waterpark and I'm sold. And I was right. Besides a shaky start that involved a 4am arrival at our hotel and no actual bed to stay in where we then spent a few uncomfortable hours on the lobby couch before getting our room and a free buffet breakfast. But it was all uphill from there. We have a private beach - hilariously named Hiltonia, where a staff member will subtly stalk you until you find the perfect beach lounger. In which he will hurry over, fluff your towel and tuck it perfectly into place, set up your umbrella and then leave you in peace. Yes, we've strayed far from our backpacking days. The weather was perfect today for a day trip to Yas waterworld, where we went on that ride where the platform drops beneath your feet to plunge you into sheer vertical terror. We met a lady who got stuck in that ride because she was too light to make the full loop around, though we initially thought she was a girl because she only weighed 35kg (we know this cause we needed her to meet the weight minimum for a ride). Tomorrow, more beach. And a visit to a famous mosque. Compared to our other travel experiences, this trip was been zero work and just complete relaxation and fun. Though, I am working hard on this tan.