Dubai - the city of opportunities and new experiences for young Arabs - boasts a diversity that combines over 100 nationalities. Yet, all these people are divided into two groups: drinkers and non-drinkers.
As part of the latter, you'll be the one sipping on soda while others enjoy exotic cocktails like the grown-ups they believe they are. When your policy in life is being a non-drinker, you'll find yourself a sort of outcast in Dubai.
Here are nine struggles a non-drinker living in Dubai will face:
1. Feeling left out
Undoubtedly, Dubai is an expensive international city... add alcohol to most outings, and you'll truly understand what it means to be broke by mid-month.
So, sometimes you decide to go for an ice cream instead of paying for something you won't consume... until you realize you have no one to accompany you, they're all partying...
2. People won't come over to your place
Because alcohol is not in the cheap budget plan, people love going to house parties where alcohol is basically free.
Well, all you have at your place is juice and chips... which won't do for your friends.
3. The Friday brunches can be boring
Dubai is well-known for its funky Friday brunches, where people spend the whole day eating and drinking.
At some point, your stomach is stuffed with food while your friends get drunk. You literally just sit there, laughing and playing with the straw of your non-alcoholic drink.
4. Dating isn't as easy
You don't frequent places where youngsters meet and mingle, and don't want to be with people who are only interested in drinking activities.
So, your only relationship would be with the bucket of ice cream that's been in your freezer for three months.
5. You don't know what to bring to house parties
If you're expected to bring something with you to a house party, it should probably be alcohol.
Try not to show up with a plate of freshly baked pie, the door might be slammed in your face.
6. You're envied for being able to save
As a non-drinker, you have the potential to save a lot of money... which you're envied for by friends.
7. You're asked weird questions
"Really? ... like, at all?" is what you get most of the time when you meet people in Dubai.
After they've asked whether it's because of your religious beliefs or if you've ever tried alcohol to begin with, a convention to change your mind is launched.
8. You might be tricked into caving in
At the end of the day, when you're home on a Friday night with no partner or plans, you will give drinking a thought... but won't go through with it.
9. Running out of fun stories to tell during lunch break
When your colleagues are having lunch at the office, laughing over drunk stories... you approach the water cooler, fill up your glass, and leave.