Late Wednesday night, I sat in tense silence on a dune with a Czech man, watching headlights sweep ever closer to us. When the vehicle was only about 300 meters away, the headlights were shut off and we heard a car door open. We decided it was time to leave.
That was Couchsurfing.
Earlier that evening, I ate French cheese in a stranger's apartment and listened to a former Egyptian police officer detail the day that he was nearly shot in Cairo.
That was also Couchsurfing.
In the morning, I parked my vehicle at a red light and ran across the street to get a great photo of Ondřej (the Czech man) in front of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.
...that was just stupid.
Ondřej and I met via a website called Couchsurfing. The website connects travellers with people that are willing to host and accommodate guests for free. A public recommendation system keeps creepers and psychotic axe-murderers from the mix. I picked Ondřej up at the airport around four in the morning and spent the day taking him on a tour of Abu Dhabi. Another Couchsurfer in the city treated both Ondrej and I to a delicious dinner in his apartment in the evening. All in all, it was a fantastic day....even if we almost got killed or kidnapped in the middle of the desert.
I know how I'll be travelling in the future!
I'll be Couchsurfing.
|We parked the car and ran across the street for this. It was worth it.|
|The best Butt Sweets shop in Abu Dhabi.|
|Ondrej and I in the desert just before the creepy 4x4 came uncomfortably close and we left in great haste.|