Friday, October 12, 2007

golden memoirs

An outlet which has remained unchanged, given the *change wave* across the UAE today, is this tiny bakery on SHJ's Al Wahda** street. Since the early 80's (I was about 5 then) most Friday mornings Dad would bring me along to the Golden Loaf. Friday mornings is perhaps the only morning, when one can drive around the city and feel its ambiance and tranquility.

Back to the future. When back in the UAE every Christmas, I drive along certain spots of the city on early Friday mornings. The roads are empty and people still in bed. I try and catch remains of that old city ambiance and memoirs. Stop by at the Golden Loaf for some simple, yummy and fresh fruit cakes and chicken patties, the very similar ones we had back in the day. What captivates, is that the treats cost as much it did back in the 70's /80's, but also that the bakery interiors remain pretty much intact with the original decor / architecture. Often, when I step into the building, it feels like nothing has changed through the decades and time has sort of stood still, in a good way. Some may find this boring or dull, however, I do not. Sometimes it's the simple things that help relive those precious memoirs and nostalgia, which I think, is a good thing. So, I shall visit the Golden Loaf when back in the UAE this Christmas, for some more cake, coffee and good ol' memoirs.

**correction - Al Wahda was miss pelt, stands corrected (thanks i*maginate)


Lirun said...

i have a bakery like that in st sauveur montreal..

i have memories of going there with my dad since i was 10 and every time i ve been to montral since - probably something like 10 or more.. i have gone there to remember that first time i was amazed by their egg bread..

its funny.. with all the low carb talk - i cant imagine any food that hits the soul quite like fresh bread.. its like a thread that connects us to everything good.. right? hehe

i*maginate said...

Aha, so you like fruitcakes too, rosh - the edible kind!

Cool - I've never been to Golden Loaf, nor have I noticed it on Al Wahda.

Talking about Al Wahda, there was a radio ad on recently promoting a new mall called "Al Wahda Mall" and the folks (why do I use the word folks? I picked it up from you! hehe) pronounce it "Al Wada Mall" in an English accent. I'm like what? What the heck is "Al Wada Mall?" Missing the "h" in "Wahda" is like such a no-no! People wrote letters in to 7days complaining about this major catastrophe lol.

Well at least it made the ad memorable!

We used to stop at Al Jadeed Bakery in Dubai (again, forgot the name of the road but it's leading to Al Mullah Plaza) but hmm I don't remember Friday mornings back in the day :P

al-republican said...

Rosh, your blog is getting interesting again, hehe! Sharjah is crazy now... too much traffic and so many people live there. It's like everyone who works in Dubai lives in Al-Nahda! I might move there too once my dad retires and leaves for Pakistan. Rents in Dubai are crazy and I need to save up for my MBA, which starts in July! My guts are already sinking thinking about driving to Sharjah from work everyday!

We used to live at Al-Urooba street in Sharjah, just behind the Sharjah creek. So everytime I pass that place by it reminds me of my childhood days. "Tana Grocery" is still there and so is the Al Hamra Cinema Building! But, the place has changed a lot and there is hardly any vacant spot now.

Another nostalgic place is Deira where I have lived for the last 15 years. I love this place even with all the crazy metro connection; the russian, morroccan and irani whores; the TONS of hotels; and good old Al Ghurair center! Wasn't that the first mall in all of UAE? hehe! I actually love the Abra area too and if I could find a place to live in one of those nice buildings overlooking the creek, I would always prefer it. Absolutely love the place even with its impossible gentry!

So many memoirs and reminiscing of old novelties and yet this is not our country! Hehe.

rosh said...

I hear you Lirun - the soul knows no calories or carbs :)

i*....yup! Me love fruitcakes, yummmmy! lol it is Al Wahda (and I spelt Al Wadha - my bad, sawwy :)

Anyhoooo, can't believe they are bringing another mall into Al Wahda street - it's become so very narrow & congested as it is? Time for another protest letter to the municipality.

Friday morning is the most serene time to be around anywhere in the UAE :) Drive around the city say, 9-10AM, you shall feel the soul :)

Al - gee thanks :) wish I had more time. Work & travel takes all my time :(

As much as I love SHJ, I wouldn't recommend you move beyond Al Nahda - at the max, stick near Qanat Al Qasba area. The evening traffic into SHJ city center just kills you - it's just really bad - mostly because of the narrow roads and drivers with zero driving culture.

Man - Al Urooba street has changed lots. Lotsa narrow high rises. Al Hamra building still stands - the place has become more of a malu community now :) Personally, there is whole lot of SHJ, most people don't know of. If you get the chance, take a drive to the American University in SHJ and the area around - one of the finest set of buildings in the UAE.

I've always believed/felt, the (old) Deira & Bur Dubai forms the true soul of Dubai. Didn't Dubai cops conduct an amazing sting operation near Baraha area a few years back? They cleaned up all those whores, with such calm and zero havoc! How do these women get into the UAE?

Re: home, yes, it's all strange, uncanny, unsettling - all at the same time. It may not be our country, but I feel it's a part of me & vice versa - given most of lives memoirs, growing years and quite many things which make us who we are today, is in the UAE.

I have shared a thought or two in an earlier post, titled
"thoughts". Perhaps, someday, it shall become home in it's truest sense :)

localexpat said...

aaah memories... I love em and Hate em at the same time.

I remember loving Sindbad in Al Ghurair center. Used to beg my parents every weekend to take me there ;-)

rosh said...

hahahaha Mr LE: that makes two of us. Memoirs, like change is a double edge sword :)

Can't live with 'em - can't live without 'em :)

I've been to Sindbad only once - think it was a few light years back :)