Amazing! (and a little more upbeat)

On Tuesday, November 5 we had the day off from school in celebration of the Islamic New Year. So at about 12:30 p.m. Gabe, Kelly, Daniel and I piled in the car and headed out for the general vicinity of the Iraqi border.

First up on the tour itinerary was Mutla Ridge. ImageImageImageImageAt 306 meters high this is the highest point in Kuwait. We hiked up to what looked like the highest point and took photos. Many families were out there. Some were grilling, some were riding 4-wheelers, all seemed to be having a grand time. We continued on and our trek took us down several fully finished highways that ended in a dead end. We were the only car on them, but it was weird to have them just stop. At one point we thought we were at the border because there was a gate with a very long fence going as far as the eye could see in both directions topped with razor wire. ImageIn front of the gate was a really nasty looking spiky thing. ImageTurns out it was probably just oil drilling operations. Anyway, we continued heading toward Iraq. We drove through the Abdali farming area where there were all sorts of trees and plants growing. We even spotted a field of corn.Image Finally we saw signs that we were approaching the border and eventually came upon a guarded gate. ImageWe parked and got out to go talk to the guard. We asked if we would be allowed into Iraq and he thought we probably would. Then we wondered if we would be able to get back into Kuwait. He told us he didn’t know, that Iraq was a dangerous place!

After that we left the border gate and started to head back. We had passed some camels but had been unable to get good pictures, so we headed down a road near the border and came across camel crossing signs Image(I love these!). Then about 200 yards off the road we saw some camels, so Gabe drove off the road toward them. They were clumped around a small trailer that was sitting all by itself. One of the camels came up to us and made us jump back in the car, as it seemed to want to eat our cameras! It wandered off and we got back out of the car.Image Several men came out to see who these strangers were and what we wanted. We asked if we could take pictures of the camels and they were very obliging. Then they invited us into the trailer where they had a diwaniya set up in the majority of the area and a small kitchen at one end. They fixed us tea, Kuwaiti coffee (flavored with cardamom), and dates.ImageImage We discussed everything from movies to politics, and all manner of topics in between. They were funny, generous, genuine, and gracious. We spent about an hour with them and exchanged numbers as we left. They said they would invite us out to have dinner with them sometime. Here’s hoping!

The sun was setting as we drove away and the moon was a beautiful crescent. ImageWe made our way back to Mahboula and had a dinner out to cap off the day. What a gloriously wonderful way to spend a day!

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathy
    Nov 16, 2013 @ 18:31:10

    Hey- Thanks for the great pics and story. Getting a bit down is par for the course when you move from the familiar. I’ve done it way too much – but it does get better ! Hope the sale goes through smoothly!!!


  2. Jena
    Nov 16, 2013 @ 23:46:58

    What a wonderful day! Interesting conversation with the guard!


  3. Ellen Manning
    Nov 18, 2013 @ 21:52:05

    Wow! Absolutely fascinating to read and see pictures about these unforgettable experieces! Thank you so much for taking the time to share with those of us who love and miss you so much!:>


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