They’ve declared the Eid holidays, and I just found out I’m getting 3 days off. Which means I get a really long weekend (Fri-Tues).
Eid of 2008 was when I went on my first road trip. I’ve blogged about it here, but only spoke about the drive there and not the trip itself. Though I largely have fond memories of the trip, there were a few annoying things that happened which I believe could have been prevented if we’d been better prepared!
For one thing, we hadn’t booked a hotel. Which is a big mistake if you’re going to a small place like Salalah. The only decent place to stay there is the Crowne Plaza. We had naively gone assuming we could easily get rooms and were nonplussed to find out they didn’t even have a vacant broom closet we could squeeze into. It should have been obvious I suppose, but we were completely inexperienced travelers then and didn’t think this would be such a popular destination for Eid.
After we were shown the door at CP, we drove around looking for a place to stay, but most places were fully booked and we finally ended up staying in a creepily large hotel that was almost devoid of patrons or even staff!
The lonely waitress at the empty restaurant didn’t know what half the items on the menu were and looked confused and lost, as if she didn’t know what she was doing at the hotel in the first place! The rooms looked okay, but hadn’t been used or dusted in a long time. In the shower, I bumped my elbow against the soap-dish and it fell off it’s hinges! It wasn’t screwed on and the hinges were rusted through and was sickening to look at! I quickly finished up and ran the hell outta there, wanting to spend as little time in the hotel as possible, which was the only good thing , if you wanna look for a bright side! :P
Salalah itself is quite lovely during this season! I remember losing our way and almost ending up in Yemen on our way to Marneef caves. I remember being awed by how high the waves were that crashed against the cliff, when we finally got to the caves, and how lovely the lights looked in the mist.
I remember our car going at 25 kmph on neutral on the Magic Road (random video there, that’s not our car). I remember lovely weather, beautiful landscapes, and their ridiculously slow pace of life.
I went there with four others, whom at the time I didn’t know very well. The rest of my friends from the group haven’t been there yet.
So, for this Eid, I’m going there again, with the gang. This time, we’ve made hotel bookings in advance. ;)
PS: I know I know! I’ve been going to so many places this year! I hope I won’t jinx anything, cos I’m loving all this travel!
Photo Credits: My friend Nitin, and his awesome SLR.