UAE: American expats celebrate 4th of July, astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi sends wishes from space

Residents have planned barbecue parties and picnics, with burgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, apple pie, and other popular US dishes

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Angel Tesorero

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Independence Day parade July 4, 2008 in Wimberley, Texas. Photo: AFP
Independence Day parade July 4, 2008 in Wimberley, Texas. Photo: AFP

Published: Tue 4 Jul 2023, 6:37 PM

Last updated: Tue 4 Jul 2023, 7:42 PM

Americans are celebrating their 247th Independence Day on July 4, the day the Declaration of Independence or freedom from British rule was adopted in 1776.

In the UAE, American expats have planned barbecue parties and picnics, with burgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, apple pie, and other popular US dishes.

UAE astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi posted snapshots taken from space of two iconic US natural landmarks to extend his greetings of ‘Happy 4th of July’ to all his American friends on Tuesday.

The photos are of the Great Salt Lake in Utah and San Francisco Bay Salt Ponds. Great Salt Lake is the largest saltwater lake in the Western Hemisphere and the eighth-largest terminal lake in the world, while San Francisco Bay Salt Ponds are a roughly 16,500-acre part of the San Francisco Bay that has been used as salt evaporation ponds since the California Gold Rush era.

AlNeyadi captioned his Twitter post: “Happy 4th of July to all my American friends! Sharing with you some snapshots of nature’s artistry from this beautiful land I’ve had the privilege to call home and made some great memories.”

In the US, the Fourth of July is a big day for fireworks, barbecues, cookouts and parades. Americans celebrate the day with sumptuous meals, parties, picnics, and fun activities with family and friends.

A delicious feast

Jay Treloar, spokesperson at the US Embassy in the UAE, told Khaleej Times on Tuesday: “July 4th is a special day for Americans to honour our independence and reflect on our shared history and nation’s founding.”

“We mark the day in many ways, often with loved ones at backyard barbecues and fireworks in the night sky. This is my third Independence Day in the UAE, and I will celebrate with my family at a small neighbourhood potluck with our close friends,” he added.

Treloar continued: “Our host tonight is a Texan who smokes the best brisket in Abu Dhabi, so it’s bound to be a delicious feast. In lieu of fireworks, I look forward to seeing UAE’s most famous landmarks aglow in red, white, and blue. Although we are far from home, we are lucky to celebrate in the UAE.”

Some American families, meanwhile, took advantage of the long Eid Al Adha holidays to travel to the US. Dubai-based American expat Taylor went home with her daughter. She shared their celebration plan: “We are going to cook at home and watch fireworks.”

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