Some people might enjoy a week in a five-star hotel where the weather is warm and the beaches are only 10 minutes away. I might, too, if I had time to leave the hotel.
Each residency, we have to write a "cultural disconnect" blog post describing an incident within the local culture that resulted from a disconnect between the cultures. For example, in London a student wrote about making a joke in an elevator that caused his American classmates to laugh out loud but the English people nearby to flee. He compared his personal communication style to the typical English style and analyzed the interaction using cultural and interpersonal-assessment tools the course has taught us. It wasn't as dry a paper as my description makes it seem, and since the professor singled it out the top paper, it was worth reading.
Since the only Emiratis I've met in five days have been the public speakers Duke brought in, and since I've only actually gotten a chance to leave the hotel twice, I think today I may skip the official corporate visit to Nakheel and instead go into the Deira neighborhood, where I hope to find people who actually live in Dubai.
I have a lot of impressions already of the city, which will take me a couple of weeks to fully process, but none of these thoughts have any data about living in Dubai supporting them.