Leaving Dubai…Where is the Grass Truly Greener?


By Sophie Bogdis


Some of us move to Dubai and stay for years and years. Some of us, for whatever reason, pick up and move ‘back home’ after a while, and sometimes it's financial, sometimes it’s on to bigger and better things, but most of the time it's because you've just had enough of the place.


It’s a big change to leave Dubai no matter what the reason. Especially if you have been here for a long time. For those of us who literally ‘grew up’ in Dubai, moving out in your early twenties all bright-eyed bushy-tailed, naïve, and shocked by all the ladies’ nights, we have seen a lot of changes but also a lot of people come and go.


There were very few socialites that did the event rounds we all knew, Radio DJ’s that became household names, and very few home-grown TV shows with Expats we didn’t yet know but could so relate to and became our family. Our go-to nights out…Ahh, 360 breeze messing up our hair!


When we think of the people during the 2005-2012 era of Dubai that became somewhat local celebrities, we think they must have moved on to bigger and better things of course. Me being one of the young ex-pats of that era, I would love to know what these people are now up to as we no longer hear about them.


I pulled out my safely kept Ahlan Hot 100 2010 book (which I am in *side note), flicked through the pages, wow the memories of the faces I saw again. Thinking about how much was achieved back then and how much more could have been since. It is a whopping 12 almost 13 years ago now after all.

I did some digging, very mild stalking let’s call it and reached out to some well-known names us now older expats would have definitely known when we first moved here, to ask ‘where are you now’? Thinking they would jump on the chance to brag about life after Dubai. But guess what? Each and every one of them declined. Yes, you read that correctly. ‘I would rather not’, ‘No thank you’, 'Thank you for asking me, but I would not like to share’.


This not only caught me off guard but got me thinking…Erm Why? Where is the grass really greener?


I would have loved to know if leaving Dubai was a good decision and what this stepping stone led to. I was all in to hear all the wonderful achievements and stories. We all think that if we are in Dubai for a long time, it opens doors for us worldwide, right? Or is It only keeping the door to our local bubble open? If you leave, can you never come back? Should we stay? Should we go? Why? What? help?


To the people who are still living in Dubai from way back when, that we still see, that we still hear about…keep it going. This for me was a real eye-opener that I didn’t expect. The days you think about giving up, or it's getting too hard, persevere. Do the best you can where you are, with what you have. As we truly do not know where the grass is greener.


I’m sure everyone has good reasons for not wanting to share where they are now. But I can’t help but keep wondering more about this. All of us at some point will leave Dubai for our own reasons, I truly hope we all do as we first came…, full of positivity but maybe with some Botox and surely wiser.