Thursday, January 04, 2007

A knot in the stomach

Alhamdullilah we didn't have much problem throughout our more than 4000km drive in two weeks. Even going through the immigration and custom having to drive through Saudi, UAE, Oman, UAE again and then the bigger Oman and having to repeat nearly the same thing on the journey back didn't pose any problem except for slowness.

However there were a few occassions that left us with a knot in the stomach.

Like for instance when we driving on the highway cutting across the vast desert and the crosswind was really strong. When we overtake a lorry, some form of air pocket forming forcing us to sway about. Worrying.

Going through some unfenced and unlit road, we were made surprise by some huge black thing by the roadside. It was a group of camel huddling up around some bushes. They are huge. I tell you! Huge! Their body is like at the height of my window. I have read many fatal accidents due to collision with these quiet beast.

But my experience getting out of Musandam must be the tightest knot in the stomach ever!

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingSo I was the sole navigator throughout the trip. Thus I had the perrogative to choose whichever route I fancy. So to get back the other side of Oman I decided to follow the route from Khasab to Diba and drive through Fujairah and get back to Oman and finally stop at Sohar, Oman.

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingI knew it was graded road but I was ready to take the chance seeing that the route is shorter plus the drive from Tibat to Ras AlKhaimah would be like a revisit since that's where we came in from. Boring!

But what I didn't know was not only it was a graded road but it was mountanious as well. If I could redefine breathtaking, I will. The view from the mountain was breathtaking. Grandeur. But our breath was stopped short driving through the road. It was graded road full of rocks some are big and sharp. Lover was worried that the tyre would pop. Some of the roads were narrow, we were worried we would topple over. Eeiiiiiii. Some are so steep, we didn't know what to expect on the other side. Sometimes another steep downhill with a sharp U-turn right at the edge of the mountain. Looking at the big boulder on top of us, we were lucky enough that none fall on top of us.

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingBut occasionally we were surprised going round the rocky mountain. You cannot believe that amongst the dry rocky, there are patches of cultivation plot. Cleverly designed to trap water especially during summer.We found some mountain goats climbing effortlessly on the steep rocks. And as we drove through the ridges, we found ourselves driving past a big plot of land (called a bowl). Dates, alfafas are grow in abundance. How they live here, I cannot imagine. (there is electricity not to worry).

We were so relieved when we finally came to the last bowl called the Raudah bowl. We stopped to let the kids hang out and take a leak. Batrisyia was complaining about the mountain drive endlessly that she kept repeating it until today. It was kinda scary.

We finally came to the checkpoint only to be further surprised. There were soldiers instead of immigration officers. Instead of letting us through like usual, they told us to go back and go out of Musandam via Tibat. But we took two hours to get through the mountain good sir. Nope, they persisted, only Omanis and Emirates can pass through here.

You cannot imagine our frustration. Just thinking of driving thorugh the ordeal made me shiver. Suddenly dark clouds came over us. Literally! It was going to rain. So we had to double up the speed before the rain pours. I just cannot bear the thought of driving in the rain on a graded road so steep you can slip back and drop off the cliff. Ahhh!

Anyway we made it safely and the return journey took us one hour. Perhaps it was the fear of rain or the confidence. But it was not so bad the second round.

At that time obviously myself and lover did not talk as obviously he was angry. But now looking back, it was a good experience indeed.

Today we can laugh and marvel at the photos. The photos can be found HERE

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
The roads carved out of the edge of the rocky mountain

14 comments:

k.d said...

Masya-Allah Lollies..I baca pun gerun. Naik bulu roma. And I know the feeling of being a navigator..

Gosh..You did well. And he did well...driving to a safe return.

Beauty comes with a price heh!

k.d said...

Lollies..lagu apa nie..kot I nak download. Cool song.

Kak Elle said...

wah ini rugged punya trip eh?I doubt I can survive from it...

Idham said...

:)wahhhh,........if i could redefine beauty, then it is what u r sharing with us here,.....majestic, fantastic, fabulous...!

A trip like that is not for the faint hearted. U and lover did well....and i must say, ur three little kids too...

memories are made of such!

Mr Arif.

Lollies said...

k.d. - it was worth every sweat we dropped. cewah! macam bagus je. anyway the title of the song is peace train sung by cat stevens. lagu tu dia dah nyanyi balik. quite nice. ada african influence. kalau u nak the mp3 i boleh kasik je kat you.

kak elle - heh heh

encik arif - i hope the kids will grow up with a good memory of this

sya said...

Lollies.

Kak sya yg baca pun takut. Just imagine how sya felt. Alhamdullilah safe journey home

simah said...

welcome back..memang best betul dengar cerita u..it must be one very adventurous drive :0)..were the kids scared too?

MULAN said...

wowweee... syok ni!!! u boley bukak offroad tour agency ni. lama dah we all tak buat keje2 ni. boley bawak i nanti kan, kan , kan?

maklang said...

dah comment kat dunia sebelah sana...

ni saje nak pi dunia blog lak

Lollies said...

kak sya - ha ha ha. sya tu memang ngada-ngada betul. tapu yalah naik gunung tu memang takut sikit. tapi abang dia excited gila

simah - i am glad you ennjoyed it. harapnya tidak menjengkelkan. the whole journey was adventurous at least to my levellah. ada orang lain lagi dasat

mulan - muahahaha. pasti boleh drive. tapi waduh berjam-jam nak sampai oman woo

mak lang - kelakarlah mak lang ni. he he

~ahni~ said...

Lover marah kat ko ke Lollies?

MULAN said...

u boleh join 4x4 transborneo ni, i bawak bendera Malaysia utk cheer & support leh. the one & only lady in the race!!! caya la. we all masuk utan kecik2 je dulu. mai sini, tak leh nak adventurous, semua dangerous... tak pun i jadi tea lady in your next expedition.. foc, janji dapat ikut u dah le.. tak puas2 i baca.. syok aaa..

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elisataufik said...

good tip.
I wanted to take the Dibba-Khasab road too, tapi since we have limited time, we decided to scrap the mussandam peninsular altogether.
Rasa2nya we have to make another trip for Mussandam sahaja.