Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones!
This past year was rather eventful for me. I traveled through SE Asia, the Middle East, UK and North America. (15 countries and three continents) I attended 7 international film festivals and am happy to report that my last feature film Bare Knuckles, has distribution in both foreign and domestic markets.
I’m back in Dubai (was here for 4 months last winter) trying to raise financing for my next project… but as you may have heard, Dubai has been suffering from a financial crisis just as much, if not more, than the rest of the world. I have a few more opportunities to check out so haven’t completely given up yet. I’m working with several partners on various projects including a TV series in Africa and big budget Hollywood feature with an Oscar winning writer director.
2009 taught me many lessons and the cultural experiences have been amazing… I could never have imagined what it would be like to live under oppressive dictatorship and extreme poverty… but now I have witnessed it first hand. I ate freshly picked mangos, lamb cooked over hot coals and bread fried in hot oil. I visited temples in Northern Thailand, castles in Scotland and war torn villages in Lebanon. 26 days in Pakistan… could be described as hell on earth, and 3 weeks in Malaysia heavenly. I am blessed to have had this incredible opportunity.
Living in the UAE is a multi-cultural experience in itself. There are several hundred nationalities from all over the world living in this futuristic city. Unfortunately a good percentage of them are living in labor camps on the outskirts and are responsible for building the towering skyscrapers and shining the designer shoes.
As far as family goes, all is well. On July 13th, Jeremy and Heidi had a baby boy, Jacob. Emma started at school this year and just lost her first tooth.
My eldest grandchild Tavia has just turned 13, wow… a teenager already, and Chris and Sue expect the newest addition to their household any day (I have Dec 27th picked on the baby pool)
Alisha and Jon are getting married next August and are expecting a baby sister for Ayden, also in kindergarten, at end of April.
I celebrated my 50th birthday and can proudly say that by next summer I will be “Noni” to 6 grandchildren. This has been a productive year.
I am leaving Dubai on Christmas Eve to fly to Rome and spend the holidays with a dear friend Deborah. She has been inviting me for 15 years so I am happy to finally be going.
Wishing you a safe and healthy Christmas and a very prosperous New Year!