Femme Fatale: the #Geekafest edition of @GeekFestDubai

It’s been a long time coming.


I knew since May I think, or perhaps June, that I was going to speak at the next GeekFest. The un-organizer Alexander McNabb had said then, that the next instalment of the event would be dedicated to female speakers at the GeekTalks.


At that time, I only had #manzilbooks to talk about. For that reason, I am so glad it was moved to September, because now I had more to say.

But HEY…this GeekFest (also termed Geekafest) was going to be held, for the first time, at the new location of The Shelter in the Al Serkal Avenue in Al Quoz, Dubai.

Before I could venture there, intrepid photographer Shruti and myself headed over in our cadmium pigmented cars to the old Shelter on Street 318b. Honestly, it felt like a scene out of a horror movie: two women with cameras and flash lights go into bushy, grassy, tree-filled area with overgrown weeds and no clear path in sight. Yeah. That.

However, this abandoned area of grassy horrordom was only a small patch, and we had people from the next warehouse stare at us curiously as we set up a tripod (when I say we, I mean her; I just walked about, muttering to myself), a camera, a flash and all that sort of photographic thing she does.

Once we’d finished our mysterious business there, we headed to the new Shelter!

It looks like a barn within a gallery – that was my first thought. Shruti and I harrassed people to stand in front of her snazzy camera and answer a couple of questions, while I fretted about forgetting things I knew I wanted to mention in my talk.

Watching the GeekTalks, including myself, @AmazingSusan, @AidaAlB and @NaylaAlKhaja

I hurried over when it was my turn, fired up Prezi (If interested, you can view my presentation here.) and started talking about autism and the projects I’m working on to raise awareness on it in the UAE. I think I stayed in my 15 minutes time limit, as I did not have Rupert Bumfrey let loose hell’s hounds on me, so I’d count that as a plus!

It was a night of friends and … photobombing. Check these out (I’m not sure why Zooberry is in most of them):


That’s @PKGulati in full business mode:

Resident photographer and videographer for the night, Shruti:

There’s a top floor too! With a meeting room and a common seating area…it’s awesome!

GamesFest was happening upstairs…check out @asatiir doing his Xbox thing (as for me, I can only imagine him going: “YOU SHALL NOT PASS!”):

Surprise of the night: Hisham dressed like everyone else. Okay well … maybe not with those torn jeans.

Anastasia about to punch anyone who mentions chick flicks to her:


There’s a fake men’s moment with an iPhone here:

Thanks for coming everyone! Check out the remaining pics here (there are about 60-odd of them!). I took the GeekaFest talks poster and have stuck it up in my room to remind me of the night. Thanks @GeekFestDubai and Alexander for letting me speak 🙂
Also, a selection of tweets from the night:

View “GeekaFest Dubai” on Storify


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