Saturday, February 21, 2015

Digging for Sand Roses

It was about a year ago that we took our first trip out to the desert to dig for sand roses so we were excited another opportunity came up for us to go out again.  While the roses are the same and once you have some you don't really need to collect any more, the idea of being in the wide open desert is really appealing!
"This is what I needed!" was something I was hearing a lot of while on this trip.  It has been a crazy week with the passing of the King and rumors of bonuses then bonuses only for Saudis.  People on camp are up in arms.  Not only that, but camp life can get stuffy feeling.  You live in a gated community passing by the same people every day, hearing about the same things over and over again, walking a life much like "Groundhog Day".  Our main getaway is going into town but that consists of driving on a very dangerous highway, fighting traffic to get to the mall, dealing with prayer time, looking at filth, and walking away feeling not very relaxed!
A trip to the desert is SO different!  You do have to drive a bit on the dangerous highway but you get to veer off from the way to town and drive on a highway less traveled.  You go out to the desert which has some trash but nothing like in town!  You get to wander abaya free and you get to be on your own schedule.  It is beautiful and a nice reminder that Saudi has some beautiful things about it, you just have to seek them out!
It is refreshing for our souls!  ALL of us!
It is amazing because the dogs can go free of leash and they had a play date of their own!  Then the kids just roamed around and did their own thing!  It was a nice break for me, I didn't hear my name much that day!
Showing daddy his haul of roses!
Look mommy, this one is for you!!!
While we are lucky on camp with regards to our kids and their freedom, my 5 year old walks herself to her friends house or takes herself and her 3 year old brother to the park, that would NEVER happen if we lived in the States, there is a different sort of freedom walking around the desert on a search for buried treasures!  A freedom of adventure!  Not only that, but we got to hang out with some families we don't often hang with on camp so it was nice to start making some memories with some new families!  It is the village of families that are there for you when your family can't be!  It is this village that helps make camp life fun and bearable! For this experience, I am thankful!
What our setup looks like with the SUVs in a row and everyone scattered around!
Since we have done this before, I know there are lots of pictures but that didn't stop me from taking a ton more!  I tell you, the beauty out in the desert is amazing and I just wanted to capture it all!  So, enjoy the pics!
Digging deep!
Group digging task
Look at our haul!!
Mommy, I think Stella wants in on the picture too.... I'm not sure Stella does!
Out in the open there is lots of wind, perfect for kite flying!
Hauling his roses in one shovel full at a time!

Snack time!
 Sharing a tasty treat- sausage from Germany!  Stella is hoping one will fall off the plate!
All of the dads digging their own hole!
Not only is there lots of sand for rose digging, it is perfect play space for kids!!
Ta Da!
I had a little one take a picture for me of all of the mom's at the snack circle!  This is about one of the only ways I make it in any picture these days!
Collected!  Time to go home!
This is why you 1) buy a 4x4 if you live in Suadi and 2) travel in a group out into the desert!  A friend in an all wheel drive car got stuck and thankfully Brad stocked our car in the very beginning with tow supplies!
Enjoying the "fresh" air in the wide open!  On to the next stop!
A traditional Bedouin camp!  We passed by several of these on our way to go sand sledding... which will be a whole separate post!  So many pictures to post!  Thanks for enjoying our pictures and following our journey!

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