Monday, September 17, 2012

6th installment of the epic photo series

Mt. Sinai, 2010. I love when people make little rock towers, just to prove a human was there. Do you see them?

So, we had a bit of an adventure hiking Mt. Sinai, which ended with flash flooding, being stranded in the desert, and now that enough time has passed I feel I can mention that this all caused a good deal of worry that land mines in the sand had shifted locations and were now potentially in the road we were driving. Not that anyone told us, our friend let us know later. In the meantime, however, my friend and I hopped out of our car to help push the car in front of us when it got stuck in the mud (that would be my foot on the bottom, hers on the right, and our friend's on the left - though we teased our friend because he got right back in the car while we womenfolk did the pushing!). Since we'd been effectively trapped in our car for a day, to respect the fact that no other women were mingling by the roadside, we had hiked up our trousers and shirtsleeves, and when we got out to push the car we were NOT appropriately dressed for a conservative culture. But no matter - we definitely got respect for being willing to jump in and help another stranded person.

Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo, where we would go when we needed a little peace and quiet n the craziness of the city. I love mosques for that - in a church, I often feel very conspicuous, like someone is going to come and ask me what's wrong, why am I in a church outside of service hours? But mosques feel more like a cultural center, a hub of activity, and despite my fair skin and blue eyes, I actually felt fairly inconspicuous here - no one batted an eyelash.

Street art on Zamalek, the elegant island in the middle of the Nile in Cairo.

A look down from a hillside in Goa, India. We'd rented a scooter and were exploring all over the place, and this view was like mental balm after five days of being sick in Mumbai (yeah, I never saw Mumbai - I actually never left the hotel room... but now I have a GREAT reason to go back!)

Look familiar? A ghat in Goa - and me!

A Goan sunset in Mandrem. We decided not to stay in the busier, more touristed town of Panaji, but instead in the tiny village of Mandrem. I would go back in a heartbeat, to our hotel with Ricky, a teenager who basically ran the place in his neon popped-collar polo shirts, and a five-minute walk to this perfect beach. We basically lived on the beach for - a week? Ten days? I don't remember, I just know that we extended our stay. Some people might think it's lame to go to such a dreamy location and not seek out wild parties and the other nonsense that the foreigners are known for in this popular beach area, but I was so happy just reading slightly outdated fashion magazines and getting $10 Ayurvedic massages in a palm-leaf cabana. To each their own.

Can't for the life of me remember where this is, but I am guessing Nepal... I just think it turned out to be a wonderfully-composed shot, and indicative of how there is religion everywhere in south Asia, even the nooks and crannies.

Me, looking out a train window in Thailand. I considered putting up the much more sleep-deprived shots, where I was basically sobbing with silliness and too much Thai candy. You're welcome.


Walking along Mae Haad beach on my island. We had just arrived, I narrowly about puking on the 90-minute high-speed catamaran ride over, and I had never been so grateful for solid ground. And that strawberry dress still makes me smile ($5 on a Bangkok side-street)!

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