Thursday, 24 July 2008

Not Too Old For A Camel Ride - Part II

Emboldened by yesterday's success, I'm having another go. Also, let's be honest, as tomorrow we are starting the big camel trek, judging by what the troops here seem to think of my physical prowess, it might be the last thing I ever write.

The dear Oloulu was an hour late this morning - pretty good time-keeping for him. Then he decided we'd better get some fuel. Then he decided we'd better get some water.

Then finally we left for the bled.

We arrived eventually at some non-descript bit of sand - but it is apparently home to the same group of Tuareg we met last time; Cue lots of dancing and singing round the camels - we have a paravet there and generally look after them. Everyone is in traditional dress, so we are also made to conform.

Much laughter at last visit's photos I'd brought along - 'that can't possibly be our Mohammed, he doesn't really have a crap camel like that' or 'gosh, look at me, doesn't my hair-do look great'.

Also nice to dish out the specs to the oldies. I have cousins in Winnipeg with an aged Dad in an Old People's Home, and as is the way of things, they end up with lots of un-needed pairs of specs. I get the same from my poor old mother's home. So it's great to make good use of them. I bring out a bagfull, and the old and bold rake through them until they finally find something that works. Eureka! They can suddenly see again, perhaps for the first time in twenty years. Then, in the midst of all the jollity, with absolutely no warning at all, my Tuareg trousers fell down. Round the ankles. Finally convincing the tribesmen that these unpredictable English, are really, truly, stark raving mad.

Jeremy Hulme

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