Much of the conversation at breakfast was about the sound the jet fighters throughout the night, but a number of us made our way to a view point in the valley beneath the camp where we could watch the sun rise. Delightful to watch the light catch the peaks of the mountains behind us, then work its way down their flanks and out across the valley.
En route to the viewing point, we spotted what looked like – and almost certainly were – gerbil burrows. A camp cat following the group made a point of showing us how he hunted gerbils – and how he controlled the landscape. Quite a remarkable creature.
Observant readers of these entries will have spotted that there are few people shown here – and little or no litter, though the landscape is often filled with both. Artistic license, I’m afraid. As a gesture, I started to pick up some litter on the way back to our camp. Finding a pair of pink children’s trousers, I gingerly lifted them up and, sure enough, three dead beetles and a scorpion fell out.
Then it was off to Aqaba, with a stop along the way to take a look at a Turkish locomotive that harked back to the time during the Arab Revolt when Lawrence helped direct attacks on the Hejaz railway running to Aqaba.
Once in Aqaba, we stayed three hours in a beach resort while some swam in the sea and pools, and we lounged on a pair of loungers in a shady spot and pondered what we have seen and experienced on this trip – all to the sound of an insistent Arab disco beat. I like music, but …