First of all I am back and uninjured. Though my ass is sore. I had a realy great time. There were seven of us that went: a Spanish woman, a Kiwi (New Zealand)couple, 2 English women, and Argentinian guy and me. The Spanish girl, one of the English girls and the Argentinian guy only stayed one night.
Camels are nasty beasts for those of you who don't know. They fart and/or poop about every two minutes, and their gas is foul. All of our camels had colds as well o they had goo slipping from their nostrils and they sneezed a lot. Fun times.
We had a breakfast of toast biscuits and chai. Meanwhile I am surveying the camels to see whch one I want to ride. This guy Ramesh comes over and says you are riding Lucky. This was like my nightmare camel. He just looked ornery, So we get going, Lucky is just doing whatever he wants. He is in line and following the leader, but at every bush he stops to take a couple of bites before he will move on. Now this is desert scrub, and most of it is very sharp and some of them have needles,; so every time he stops for a snack I get covered in scratches. At one point we had to go down a steep incline. Lucky decides that it is a good idea to trot down the incline and then takes off running at the bottom and doesn't want to stop. I had to pull him back pretty hard to get him to slow down. Later on he was going for another prickly brush and I pulled him away, all of a sudden he goes down on his knees, I about had a heart attack. I thought he was being ornery again but the people behind me said that he tripped on a rock. He also spit at and attempted to assault another camel.
We took a 3 hour restbreak during the heat of the afternoon and most of us napped. We then set out again. Our first night we camped out at some sand dunes. That was pretty cool. We were all chatting and Ramesh, one of the guides tells me that my camel Lucky won the camel races last week in the festival. I was like why did you give me the crazy speed demon camel. I switched camels with one of the English girls because she had rdden at the front and the lead guide Ransingh held her reins the whole way and she wanted a chance to hold the reins herself. Her camel, or rather my new camel was Jambo/Jamul? I don't know they kept calling him different names. Anyway he was old and had a sagging bottom lip. I rode him the next two days.
We camped out on some sand dunes and as dark was falling, someone mentioned that they had seen a mouse. I immediately had flashbacks to camping in Naranagh. However, there was this dog that had been following us all day and I brilliantly invited him to come sleep on my mattress. He stayed there the whole night. It was my first time sleeping under the stars without a tent. The next day we woke up to chai. We did a similar schedule but towards evening it actually started to rain so we had to take shelter in a hot house. Which are actually houses built so that people can take shelter in during the heat of the day. We had dinner inside but when the sky cleared the other three went to go sleep outside. I, decided to sleep in the hothouse. It had two rooms: the guides were in one, I un another. I asked Ramesh about mice, his response "I h\one hundred percent sure maybe no mice." I felt very good after that answer. Anyway the room was intriguingly decorated with glass shards n patterns all over one wall. It smelled really bad though. Almost bad enough for me to risk sleeping outside.
In the morning, the others blankets were covered in dew but I was quite dry in my little room so I felt somewhat vindicated. In the morning, one of the camels bit one of the guides on the head and the guide kicked the camel. I don't agree with kicking animals, but I kind of felt like he deserved it. We set out early too make up for lost time. We stopped at a lovely fort and a ruined village were quite intriguing. We rode for a long time to make up for our early evening the day before and then had lunch and the jeep picked us up and drove us back to town.
The desert was lovely. Much of it was just dry scrub land. There were scattered areas of dunes. I saw two deer like creatures. I also saw a lot of mouse tracks in the dunes. Otherwise, there were no more interesting animals. Our guides were great. They cooked really good and very varied meals, and they gave us all the bottled water we could drink. They washed our dirty dishes in sand, because we couldn't spare water. The camels wee on the whole quite well behaved. When we camped in the hothouse they used dried cow dung to start our fires. It was crazy to watch because they would throw a cow patty on the fire and then with the same hands start flattening chapatti dough. It made me quite queasy. Another thing that was interesting was they used baby formula to make the chai with since taking milk into the desert is just impractical.
Anyway, I am back to the hassle. The moment I stepped out of the jeep a rickshaw pulled up and asked us if we wanted a ride. I was asked 5 more times in the 3 minutes it took me to walk to my hotel. When I finally reached the bleeping place they told me that they were full even though had told them that I would be back on Saturday and they said they would save a room for me. So then I spent half an hour walking around trying to find a room. I am now at Hotel Siddhartha.
My little vacation from my vacation was nice and it was exactly what I needed. Now I am back in the mix. Love ya.