Running hot and cold (and hot again) travel blog

The camel who loved me

Arabian feast goes better with fosters lager

Dune boys

Great fun

Today was all about our afternoon activity. A leisurely start at brekky, with the most amazing array of food. David said that he'd read bad reviews but seriously if you weren't happy you need to go stay somewhere else and take your precious self away from us who were enjoying it. There are staff tripping over themselves to assist however Kevin had a bad experience with a dismissive staff person. He let her know as well.

We headed over to the shopping centre again and found a place like mr minit... They didn't have the right size watchband but the guy decided they would grind the sides down to make it fit. I was a bit uncertain but said righto... What's the worst thing that can happen?

So we wandered around buying things we didn't really need, and went back for the band. It was perfect, the workmanship was fantastic. Then he spend another 10 or so minutes adjusting the size to my wrist. Finally all done. The price for all that labour?

Nothing.. Just the cost of the band.. Try doing that in Australia... So I can't stop looking at it. It's fabulous.

Lunch, a rest and off to our adventure.

We were picked up by a nice guy, very pleasant. They just don't speak and tell you what's happening. We eventually picked up two Asian boys who giggled a lot, we had a Japanese lad in the front who slept all the time, and off we went.

He didn't speak for ages until he pulled up at a servo... He told us to get out.. That this was the meeting point... We were a little confused as how can we go 4 wheel driving in a big bus?.. That's what we were thinking as there were people everywhere.. So we went in to the little shop, browsed the aisles, used the loos and people watched. It's always amazing to observe people. They act like they'll never see food or drink again. They were like swarming bees. Anyway, about 15/20 mins he turns back up and says get in..

So we did. We drove and drove but eventually turned off and went 4 wheel driving over the desert dunes.. So much fun.. He was very skilled. It was a bit freaky when you would realise you were at the pointy top of a huge dune and you were about to go straight down. However just before I left home I watched a documentary about how sand dunes are formed. Here's some trivia for you. Apparently grains of sand form together and stay together at approx 30 degrees so from that I deduce that anything greater and it collapses and reforms so whilst it definitely was steep I assume the slopes were at about 30 degrees.

So, it was fun. First absolute laughing for a very long time.

There were lots of stops for photos and there was a guy taking video that later on you could buy plus a guy taking millions of pictures.

Later on we were shown a compound of camels some of which were very friendly and came up very close for photo opportunities.. There was a guy with a hooded falcon getting photos with people as well.

Eventually we ended up at an 'oasis' where we had a quick camel ride and on then to the food and entertainment. There was sheesh smoking, dates and Arab coffee, sand sculptures/painting in bottles, henna- I got hand and calf done, whirling dervish and belly dancing. The dervish was very skilled... He had 3 layers that eventually came off. One layer whirled off and he grabbed it twirling and rolling until he made a baby wrapped in a rug. The music changed to a baby crying and then as he tossed it into the air over and over it changed to laughing and gurgling. Very clever. His uniform/ garments lit up as well. Flash!

The belly dancer was good, nothing special.. They provided a great BBQ - lots of hamburger, lamb chops and tandoori chicken, yummy salads and really good hummus to go with the flat bread. Delish!

We didn't score any sweets, others grabbed it all. But the barbie washed down with fosters lager went well enough. Simplicity is often the best after all.

I thought it was one of the best things we've ever done, but some people are hard to please. An Australian woman stopped me at the loo, and said... Before you go in there... I waited to hear a toilet horror. But no... She wanted to bag out the whole thing. Never wasted so much money, a total waste of time, seen better in almost every country she had visited.

I said you sound disappointed... A mistake... It set her off again. A litany of complaints.

As David says... A first world problem.... The least she could have done was not suck the life out of my enjoyment. Regardless I had a great time.

Exhausted,sweaty and happy we returned to the hotel for an early night because tomorrow we fly to Moscow.

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