March 24, 2009


Back from my journey I feel full and happy. I have truly lived these days, enjoying every moment. There was a lot of time to just stare and marvel at the world. Maybe I have even gotten a little wiser by learning more about myself.

I have been friendly to people, even those who apparently wanted just more money. I guess in some situations I was deliberately dumb because I am so trusting toward everyone. But then I think that I got back home safe and the universe has watched out for me. Most people recognize my weakness in my trusty (some say naive) nature, yet I still have not met the person that really wanted me bad. Will I ever?

There really is a difference between the traveller and the tourist. The people in the desert even have a word for the tour tourists, who they call Tamalou (pronounced French, freely translated as: "where does it ache you?").

Our group has not been aching. In fact we took everything that was offered without bothering if the lemonade glass was 'european style clinically clean' or whether the fruits were a little dusty. We slept on thin mattresses and tried to learn arabic wherever we could. We have been called uncomplicated people because it was easy to make us happy. And we were happy, which I suppose is the best gift you can bring if you are a visitor.
The last thing that makes the tourist a traveller is that he is asked to come back anytime to see more. And that is a real treasure.

This alchemist once again has returned to where he started!


Abu said...

try the following site for Quranic Arabic

Deep Blue Sea said...

Hello Mister Robert. Sometime ago I found a link thru ur blog to a photo blog by a woman from afghanistan . But I am unable to find it again. Can u please give tat link again ..

Esfand` said...

good to have you back my friend!!! :)
I am glad you had fun... I am happy to read your blog and yes I so agree with you about the difference between the tourist and the traveller :)
but hey I wud still recommend being a bit more careful when it comes to consuming something edible or specially when drinking... I agree with the idea of not being too particular about the style of things, but then there are some issues specially when it comes to fluids which you should always be concerned about... or your travels can become a bit less entertaining :)

Have a great week my dear Alchemist!!
P.S. Loved the pics!! specially with the desert in the back n that blue scarf :D

Robert said...

@ Abu: Thanks for the hint, the site is interesting and might become helpful soon :)

@Deep Blue Sea: I am not sure what blog you refer to from the description. It might be Pasión Viajera, a Spanish blogger who had pictures from her Afghanistan travels... Sorry if that is no help.

@Esfand: Thank you my friend :) It is good to be back, especially now that spring is here!!
Your warning about the food is wise, I have had my guilty conscience for not paying attention to well-meant advice but I got lucky. Though a less entertaining journey is surely not the risk, only a less enjoyable one :D
Glad you liked the pics, I might put some more in the slideshow soon. Be happy!!