My Emirati students would look at me with intrigue in their eyes when I told them I lived in Al Hamra. They would whisper and I would always catch the last word “…jinn.”
But it gets even better.
While I was living there, the movie Djinn was released. This was not just a backyard movie that was made, but was directed by Tobe Hooper. You know him from his direction of Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The story is of a young Emirati couple that return from the United States to live in Al Hamra, where the malevolent Jinn invade their lives. You can watch the trailer here: (watch the entire thing; it is in English)
Of course, no one that lived in Al Hamra would go with me to watch it; so I went alone. And then returned to my apartment that was very much like the one depicted in the movie. No, nothing happened.
Another insight to the world of the Jinn is in the book Alif the Unseen. I read this before arriving in the Emirates and it is absolutely wonderful. It follows a young man who has uncovered the secret book of the Jinn--The Thousand and One Days—and he is forced to go underground to struggle for life and death with both seen and unseen forces. If you liked Harry Potter, this is the Arabic version of magic and quests.