I just had to visit Salalah.
Located at the southern end of Oman, I had heard tales of the Khareef season, the rain, greenery, and mists, contrasting with the hot, endless summer in the rest of Arabia.
The choice is to fly or drive. From Dubai to Salalah, it’s a thirteen-hour drive of 1220km.
Oman is a vast country, sparsely populated, small villages don’t offer many comforts, especially for westerners. It’s a tough and tiring drive, few places to stop and nothing to see. This area of Oman consists of endless gravel plains, with little to break the monotony and accidents are frequent.
A two-lane highway just south of Adam, home for the next 8 hours. Music, Kindle, conversation reduced to playing wilderness I-spy,
” It begins with G”,
“No, Gravel, Stupid”.
A trip like this makes or breaks a friendship.
Haulage and coach drivers follow this route day in, day out. Service areas have rest houses, repair workshops, small goods shops, cafeterias and, of course, a mosque.
It’s a long way to sit and wonder how much longer is it going to take. A cool box of snacks and water was our option,
“Oh, No, not another cheese and pickle sandwich, how many did you make?”
Hmm, seemingly unappreciated effort.
Comfort stops behind scrubby bushes on the busy road, snatched in breaks between the traffic are the only option. I just had to hope everyone was driving far too fast to notice the flash of white flesh.
The only overnight stops are rest houses, as yet I haven’t been brave enough to partake.
Having vowed I wouldn’t repeat the experience, I did it again several months later.
This year I’ll fly!