Wednesday, January 05, 2005

A lost oasis

Note to self: Never again throw a party while trying to recuperate from a killer hangover from New Year’s Eve.

Starting off the year determined to forge ahead on Rashid’s story. Book is getting darker, but added touches of humor as well to lighten it, such as the scene where he is discussing venturing deep in the western desert to find the treasure, and Jabari warns him the way is treacherous and the oasis difficult to find. Rashid boasts he can navigate at night by the stars and find camel tracks in the softest sand. Then Jabari and Ramses exchange glances and Ramses remarks, “And you got lost in Cairo trying to find the Shepheard’s Hotel.”

I’m having fun researching the setting. Learning all about the environment of the western desert. Rain is rare, but it happens. In 1873, German explorer Gerhard Rohlfs set out for the great sand sea. He got stranded and unbelievably, for two days, it rained. And saved him. Explorers believed somewhere in the western desert was the lost city of Zerzura, an oasis where there was a castle filled with treasure.

I'd love to be an explorer, searching for a lost treasure city. Guess I'll have content myself with visiting slums instead. Trip to Honduras all set for month’s end. Gang violence getting worse, there’s a bit of concern since the incident two weeks ago when gangs raided a public bus and shot and killed 28 people. But I figure we’re not taking public transportation, so we’ll be okay.

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