How it Feels Leaving Britain… Again or my Adventures in Great Blightain

Hello, people! I think I know what you want to hear, so… I am in Dahab. I am sitting at the helm of my PC. We arrived yesterday. I am now going to tell you about how crap it feels to leave home. It feels… upsetting. I wanted more time there. But it also feels… good. As in, good to be leaving the cold.
Good to be leaving the government, the rain, the… airport. I think it felt best to leave the airport. The other places were likable, in their own way. Except the government. I won’t miss them, the oily, cynical bastards. Not that I saw them.
Anyways, it was sad. For a start, I didn’t get nearly enough time with my friends. No sir. In conclusion, I didn’t get enough time to see relatives. I might have felt a bit better, in hindsight, if mum hadn’t been plastered right up to the point at which she woke up in Luton. And then later sort of blamed me for her missing tickets.
Enough whining, though. I can’t write an entire post about how sad I felt on the plane to Geneva (and then Sharm). So, let’s start with Kinder Castle. What is Kinder Castle? A castle. A CASTLE. David rented it. David is a futures trader. David is a lord.
Seriously. We gave him champagne (well, fizzy). The others gave him such things as cufflinks, a jumper, a “Bathtub Duck Shoot” set and… a lordship. Yes, my cousin is now Lord David. He owns a square metre of land in Obscuristan, Scotland. Okay, I lied. Obscuristan isn’t in Scotland. It’s in Siberia.
I don’t know what he’ll do to his square metre. I’d be impressed if he could find it. Anyway, it’s probably got a crappy tree on it or something. But anyway. Kinder Castle. Kinder Castle is a small, well-kept castle in the Peak District. It’s owned by the National Trust or something.
It was built during the European Dark Ages, but restored during the 17-1800s to make it the perfect English “Summer” home. Well, I say Summer… you know what I mean. That time of year when the sun shines down upon the world… then quickly hides because Britain’s appeared.
Anyway. I enjoyed that. But what did I actually do? Hm, good question, quote mark-free person in my head. I… watched an awful lot of TV. I… shot things with the water pistol that came with Dave’s bath toy. And I flew a kite. That’s mostly it.
Sure, I played with Dave (they had a Wii), I messed about, I iced a mini-cake, I… built a fort. Oh yeah, that. Minor detail. I figured out that the Sky box in the lounge worked, and then I noticed the huge array of cushions and footrests that would help with my fort. And I thought it was a good idea.
Not everyone was happy with the new arrangement. But I liked it, and I thought it was cool. Even when I had to deconstruct it at checkout time. So, I spent most of the time in my fort, with the telly. I spent some time with other stuff. But… it was the fort that mattered. Really.
So, erm… yeah. Telly, fort, water, cake, kites… yeah. Then we drove off. Then we drove back, a day later, for a first aid course. CPR, metal-splint-things… OKAY, ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. I will continue this in another post. Stay tuned for first aid, airports and… probably kittens.

©blah blah blah lawyers blah 2013 blah lasers blah

Balloons? Yes.

Yep. I’ve been in a balloon. It’s awesome. We are in Cappadocia, BTW. Fine, Turkey. Cappadocia has some nice rock formations, nicknamed Fairy Chimneys by most people. Me? I say they look more like Phairy Phalluses. No, not palaces, phalluses. Who knows, maybe mum and I just have perverted, immature minds. But the resemblance is striking.
Now, back to ballooning. It was an early wake-up for the sunrise (all balloon places do it), but what comes next (no, not the bus ride you twit) was brilliant. We saw the balloons inflating. The thing they use to heat up the air seems more like a flamethrower than a gas burner.
Next up: The takeoff. It’s a slow, crawling takeoff. The pilot burns loads of gas to get us into the air. But we make it. Next, we fly over the place coyly called Love Valley. Not very romantic, but certainly the highest concentration of Phairy Phalluses. But there’s more.
The pilot is very skilled. We fly down into another valley. We fly between rocks and at one point brush over the top of a tree. At this point I’m no longer worried by the creaking noises coming from the steel cables holding it all together. Nor does the drop perturb me in the least.
The rest of the flight goes pretty smoothly. At the end we slow down to stop because of lack of wind and have to climb a bit to catch the air current. But it’s fine. Finally, we land in the back of a truck. Yes, I said truck. It’s a flatbed. The flight isn’t over yet, though.
Next, the pilot opens vents to let the air out. I am perhaps the only one happy to end up swathed in the now-deflated bag. Now, finally, we get out. This is after the bag is taken off us, obviously. Now, finally, the flight is truly over. Last of all: Celebratory champagne (for me too). Turkish champagne. And yes, it’s tinged with vodka.

Self-Inflicted Insomnia

Hello! I have been suffering from a lack of sleep (call it self-inflicted insomnia) and have, as a result, decided to mention it in today’s post. But fear not! This is not a rant. This is a normal post. And it is about Jordan. We have been to Petra, the Wadi Rum, and the crusader fortress of Karak. They all had one thing in common: super-duper expensive. Really pricey. But this ain’t a rant.

So. Petra. Everyone’s heard of it, everyone wants to go and everyone’s bound to quiz me about it. It’s not an unjustified urge. Petra is brilliant. You walk through the Siq (wadi?) to get to the Treasury and are greeted by possibly one of history’s grandest sights. The Nabataeans who built the tomb (still the Treasury) knew how to make it look good.

Time (and superstitious Bedouin) has eroded it, but the famous scene of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade remains the most dramatic and magnificent sight of all Jordan.  I mean, it sort of materialises out of the rock. Sure, the Monastery is awe-inspiringly huge, but it’s a climb and it’s not even red! Only the Treasury is red.

You really need 2 days in Petra. It’s huge. I’m, frankly, running out of words. Oh, did I mention that one of our friends is shooting a film in Wadi Rum? She is. You are denied the right to a spoiler. Well, okay, just a littl-  oh **** I’ve run out of words- *transmission cuts out*

Nana nana naa na 1: Sinai Desert

Nana nana naa nah, I got to go to the desert. That’s right, I’m doing a post devoted to crowing about my experiences in the Sinai desert. Well, not just crowing. It’s about what I did and stuff like that.

So, on day one we mainly just ran around on sand dunes. Should you find yourself on a good big dune, I would advise you to roll or run (check for rocks first, mind) all the way down. Should you have a slide-y piece of material big enough and shaped right, then it may well be intended to be a dune-board (or toboggan).

Day two? Well, we went to a well. And Mohamed splashed me. Oh, and we (mum excluded) climbed a rock by moonlight.

As for day three… Well…  We went canyoning with the Evil Gnome (Willem, our Dutch friend who came on the trip with us, had the idea) and had lunch at an oasis. BTW, we moved camp every night. I got to stand in the back of our 2wd Hilux while it bounced over sand and stones.

On the last day, we left the Evil Gnome (something Willem had always been planning to do) in a canyon. He liked it there. He could scare people by echoing his evil laugh. We had lunch outside the canyon. Then I had my first driving lesson. I released the clutch too fast, naturally.

After that we went back. I did not drive. So yeah, end of post. Hope you liked it, and I hope it influenced your opinion of deserts.