Tuesday 27 March 2007

Oman: Wadi Shab

Al's head did not look like the predicted strawberry, but one creature had caused hideous damage to his back. This was temporarily soothed by the tepid sea, bacon sandwiches and tea.

A couple of hours after breakfast, mother started packing and questioned why, despite having not informed us, we were not doing the same. We started to pack. The sweaty job of loading everything back into the car was soon rewarded by a refreshing dip before departure.

We drove eastwards again to Wadi Shab where Mrs M acted as tour guide while I guarded just about everything valuable we own in the car. Balanced on a rock in the shadow of trees, I took the opportunity to chat to some of the Omani guides waiting for their groups. My standard Arabic caused one chap a few problems, requiring the services of a second driver to translate from standard to Cockney Arabic.

Meanwhile the family made their way up the wadi, fending off the unwanted attention of a local self-appointed guide. Almost three hours later, they hove into view, tired but happy. A sandwich or two later we were on the road back to Muscat. The condition of this stretch of road is never good, but the recent storm damage has made it almost impassable. The smoothness of the tarmac came as a welcome relief to the passengers in the third row of the Prado, but did not inhibit a mosquito from eating us alive during the journey.

Back home we decanted the car like a team of highly coordinated ants while Al warmed spag bol, although another family culinary incident occurred when he forgot to lubricate the cooked pasta. We survived the incident and consumed like troopers

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