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Because you can't spend all day every day journeying around IgoUgo, editors round up the highlights: members' notable trips, newest reviews, favorite destinations, contests, and more. Have a question or idea? Let us know!

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Traveler of the Week’s Notes on Life in the Desert

Traveler of the Week’s Notes on Life in the Desert Photo

Photo by TianjinPaul

Posted on November 21, 2010 in Traveler of the Week

Is it okay that we’re glad our Traveler of the Week used to have a lame job and started losing his cricket form? He attributes his past few years of worldwide traveling to those two factors, and the result is experiences in China, Mongolia, Korea, Turkey, and now Oman. TianjinPaul’s ever-growing journal about living in Rustaq, a town in the north of Oman, is full of anecdotes and observations on, as he calls it, his life in the middle of nowhere.

The heat of Oman is a theme throughout this journal, and you can best get an idea of just how intense it is with his list of “you know it’s hot when.” Not only does he look like an ageing Hollywood movie star tan-wise, apparently it’s impossible to have a cold shower, you can’t even wear flip-flops, and getting frozen pizza home from the store is a race against time that you won’t always win.

Other parts of the journal are more serious, or at least less funny."Censorship shocks me" is a story about TianjinPaul’s experience with government censorship of media all over, with special consideration of what Oman does with Skype.

As a university teacher, TianjinPaul experienced the effect of rain on a classroom of students--a hushed silence, a few gasps, and pleas to be sent home for the day. While he did not then understand the change that came over his class, he did get how incredible it was when the wadis, rocky valleys made up of river beds and palm trees, were transformed from an arid, moon-like landscape to a wonder of waterfalls by rain in one of the driest places on earth.

For descriptions like that--and stories about the trials of nonalcoholic beer and impersonating an Omanis--we are indeed glad TianjinPaul’s few weeks of post-job traveling turned into six years, and we are looking forward to the next stop!

More from TianjinPaul on IgoUgo
The Historic Parts of Beijing
Istanbul Sights
Going Back ‘Home’
Istanbul Survival Guide
Staying in Beijing

Posted by eyesoftheworld (Anna Welch)

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