Riding the ships through the dessert
Douz Travel Blog› entry 11 of 20 › view all entries
I get through the salt lake to the small dessert city of
I have tried to go on a camel before and I don’t consider anything but a short trip like suitable for me. A little trip of an hour sounds like a good idea. There is the option of taking a trip from the road and half an hour into the dunes which seems to go on forever. After a couple of minutes the road is no longer in sight and the ride seems truly to be going through the far away dessert on a hunt for the next water source on the long trek through the dessert with important supplies from sub-Saharan Africa - or something like that. My camel is acting up a bit with its mouth covered in foam and I quickly see where George Lucas got the inspiration to the sound of Chewbacca in Star Wars from - my camel sound just like Chewbacca.
The good thing about a short camel ride is over before it gets too uncomfortable - riding camels are even worse than riding a horse when it comes to comfort - and I can’t help but have the utmost respect for the hard people who manage to go for weeks on the caravans passing through the Sahara - it must have been extremely uncomfortable with only a small reward for the hardship.
I leave the camel behind - I can’t really say I miss it - and go on. On the road back I pass by some remains of an old sand dune. It is a strange thing to see - the big hills are gone the soft sand is long gone and now there are only some small tops left with the old core of the dune consisting of hard-pressed sand. The small sand spikes look like sandstone rock but it is much softer and when you get close you can feel it is different and if you rub the sand with your fingers it will actually crumble.
Next to the sand dune remains are a shop - like always - and the shop owner have got his own private attraction - a peregrine falcon which is ready for you to take a picture with it on your hand for just the tiny sum of one dinar or about 77 cents US. I opt not to take the bird on my hand I don’t really like the concept of a peregrine falcon being kept in captivity just for tourist to take pictures of the bird. The bird is the ultimate hunter and the fastest living creature on the face of the planet so it should be out and around hunting smaller birds instead of living on the mercy of its master. Despite my reservation of the whole exploitation of the bird I think it is actually cute and I snap a few photos of it anyways just not on my hand.
I leave the dessert to head back to civilization and get some of the benefits of a city - like running water and places to eat.