Trekking on Wadi Rum
And what would you say to such a survival art, where you have the impression that all the factors surrounding you have gotten against you? Should the sun mercilessly burn your face and within a few kilometers there would be no shade? If your shoes were as heavy as concrete and you would not be able to lift your legs? If sight could not catch on the horizon any edible plant and no animal you could hunt and feed on? Had your throat burned so cruelly as to swallow broken glass and you would not have a drop of water? Should you be outside the reach of the network and out of sight of other people? And what would you say if every next step set a new limit of your possibilities? Trekking after Wadi Rum?
I would say “I’m going to it”. And I said. And I went.
Deciding on a few days trekking in the Wadi Rum desert I did not know what to expect. This is my first experience with such a climate. Feelings that still torment me today are utterly extreme. So many emotions that accompanied this expedition have not experienced for a long time. It is such absolute bipolarity. From delight and euphoria to breakdown and resignation. It was beautiful and it was hard.
It was hard
I wake up in the morning. So early that the sun is not over yet so much. Somewhere there 4000 km behind me and a few days back was my comfortable bed. The rock on which I slept today was cool enough to give a nice chill and hope for a better day. Hips are aching from the lack of a soft mattress, in the legs I can feel the kilometers I passed yesterday, the head of the strange rumor probably dehydration. Around my makeshift litter I’m looking for a mug with yesterday’s bedouin iced tea.Maybe he was at least sip? Unfortunately. He was not. I’m trying to squat in a sleepy way. I shovel sand and big black ants with legs so long that they look like stilts.
Around me absolute silence. No bird singing, murmuring brook, tree noise. Desert is quiet. I look at my friends and travel companions. All those pesky, pensive, quiet people. Or we have already started to melt in the desert and just like she is silent or we all just have a pleasant morning. Quickly wind up sleeping bag, packing water bottles and move again. Today’s backpack seems to be even heavier than yesterday. How it’s possible? I did not do anything. The equipment has a minimal amount and everything super-extra-hiperlight. Eat not much, some clothes on the cross, some cream with a filter, toothbrush. It seems to me that my own fatigue made me pack several kilograms more into my backpack. It’s hard. I try not to think about it. I’m going.
Sand attack and burning sun
The legs fall into loose ground. Boots are sanded every possible microscope. Top, side, front. The sand attacks on every side. After a while, I have the impression that there is no place for my shoes in my shoes. Oppression becomes irritating first and then unbearable. Well, I will not stop now and I will not pour. All the more so because the cruel sun had just decided to enter the zenith. An hour ago I walked hiding in the shadows thrown by one of my companions. Now it is no longer possible. We reach some rock. Beautiful sandstone hollowed by wind. It looks a bit like a giant dollhouse.Everywhere nooks and crumbs resembling small rooms. Here we rest for a few minutes. We’ll drink water, throw in a Jordanian barbecue or a can of tuna, we shake sand from the shoes and we will continue. So we go all day. It would be impossible to wait for the biggest heat, but it is a shame for us time. Kilometers will not do it themselves. At one of the stops I have heartily enough. His back and knees hurt a lot. Each next step is a katorga.
I’m throwing away some food. It’s hard to say. I’ll be hungry, but maybe I’ll be able to lift my comfort a little bit (if that statement can be used at all). I do not even know whether to get rid of any food stuff. I’m all for one. Let this day end. Let the sun go down. Let this cursed oven finally let go. I want to take off my shoes and backpack. Now! Immediately! With these small and awkward steps I am approaching the evening. I curse loudly all the sections of the hike that were up the hill. I also curse sandstones that seemed to be right next to me, and it turned out that to hide in their shadow I had to go for a few hours. Here on Wadi Rum the distance has spilled out of any control and is mocking our standards. Jordanian kilometer seems to have at least five of our Polish.
We found a place to stay. Again after dark. I just collect the wood for fuel and we can sit down together at the aromatic fire and drink this hellishly bedouin tea, which we all so loved. Our wood is also a curse. Dry and squat bushes that mercilessly hammer into your fingers and hurt your hands. Now there is no part of my body that would not hurt me. We sit, we stare into the darkness again in the bright flames. What a relief. Pleasant cool wind contrasts with heated rocks. Finally it is pleasant. I rub my legs with stones, break my sleeping bag and squint my eyes. Under the drooping eyelids, the last view of the day is crested – millions of stars hanging limply in the sky.
It was beautiful
All the days spent in the desert would have kept this pattern, if not the fairytale elements, which surprised and astonished us time and again. Somewhere between tiredness and dehydration things have crept into my life for the rest of my life. I will never forget the first night on Wadi Rum. We climbed a small rock cracked from the sun.It looked as if someone had placed terracotta on it – beautiful and even tiles. On top of that, seasonal rains have shaped something in the shape of a bowl in which water accumulates. We were lying in the triple and staring at the stars and they were like crazy coming down from the sky. How many wishes did I say then! And what a beautiful and palpable way it seemed to be a dairy road! I will remember all these amazing rocks, over which millions of years worked the wind – a persistent sculptor. They are like clouds – they show animal shapes and human faces. Carefully hollowed nooks, cracks and cavities give shade and shelter to many animals.
Desert is alive
Yes – animals, because the wilderness is full of life. Just look under the aching legs to see the vast traces left by ants, beetles, bees, lizards, scorpions, foxes, goats, camels, birds. The latter loved to rap around the rocks giving great concerts. I also remember the sources hidden somewhere in the rock.It was like a wine cellar. High stairs down and you are in a cave whose bottom is filled with delicious cold water and the walls are covered with ferns and other vegetation. It was there, in these beautiful circumstances of nature, we set up a spectacular snake hunt. One of them became our dinner later.And the next morning we chased after the scorpions. It is a pity we did not succeed in preparing as a natural scorpion vaccine according to the bedouin recipe. Looking for rest and soothing shade, we stumbled across an oldaraban script and engraved engravings in the rocks. Ba, on the one was hollowed out whole camel caravan and tips for traveling around. As it turned out later, these works could have even 3000 years.
Echoes of the desert
It is amazing to feel so much of the spirit of the past wandering among these rocks. There are still a handful of tales of ancestors, old Bedouin passages and fairy tales that our friend Ali has given us and a man feels bound to this place forever. With a smile I remember the night spent in a heart-shaped cave. We were listened to in Arabic songs, laughing and carefree. It is impossible to tell everything I saw there. I honestly had the impression that this can not really happen. I thought it was a beautiful dream and I hoped that I would never wake up to it. I will remember the watermelons of the desert, the flowers, the filtered creams, the food of one micha, the scarabs, the good people we met there, the sound of our Muslim evening prayers. Friends, chameleon, termites, breathtaking sunsets, moments of meditation and reverie, laughter, laughter, now that I seem to be funny, Bedouin tea kettle, red car song, gorges, canyons, mountains, gładkowiaki.
The fact is that without our persistence and determination we would not experience so many things.If we did not have so much self-denial and want to experience a new one, we would not have come to this real feast for the senses. Each successive step, though so difficult and tiring, brought an incredible reward. Or maybe it is just that the more we shoe our shoes, the more we admire what has set us fate? Maybe the heavier our luggage, the harder we try to report it to the target? Really worth crossing your borders, setting new and stubbornly check what awaits us around the corner.