I visited Dubai last December, and I have been wanting to try it. Guess what? Hookah is pretty popular around here in Bangalore as well. And, according to the wiki, the initial trace of Hookah has been found not in an Arabic country but in the northwestern part of India!
The other day was a gathering of my hubby's college alumni here in Bangalore, and I piggy backed on him to enjoy a couple glasses of wine at the sky bar in downtown Bangalore. And, there it was! Hooka! So we tried :D
Btw, I HATE cigarettes. Well, I smoked for about 3 years when I was working in Tokyo (approx. 20 years ago), but ever since then I have been avoiding (or more like hating) smoking. In fact, I get some kind of allergic reaction when I am around lots of smoke. So, I was a bit worried that I may not enjoy it after all, but hey you need to try new things, right?
Hookah comes in a whole bunch of different flavors. We chose blackberry, and it was the right selection! The smoke was not as strong as cigarettes (maybe 70% lighter). You enjoy the aroma and flavor and that's it. You breathe in and breathe out - just like when you do yoga :-) The whole experience was GREAT. If you haven't tried Hookah, I would highly suggest trying it at least once even if you don't smoke cigarettes.
Btw, I also enjoyed the conversation with my hubby's almuni folks. They gave us all kinds of tips on India. Fun to talk with someone who came back to India after exploring the western culture. It was also fun to see my hubby who graduated in the early 1970's talking with folks who just went to the same (but probably much different) school more recently. Well, my hubby was also very young when he went to college (he is one of these genius kids in the US who skipped grades, and he was out of college at the age of 19), so the whole experience he had back then must had been a lot different. Anyway, it was lots of fun!