Tuesday, 29 December 2009

A Christmas Camel Ride

One great thing about Turkey is that in some places you can find tourist camels. Not camels who are tourists, but camels for the tourists. They live on the roadside in popular destinations like Cappadocia. For a small fee you can climb up a ladder and onto a big cushy camel saddle. For another small fee you can ride that camel up and down the street.

The other day while James and I were driving back from visiting friends for Christmas we drove by a roadside camel and I shouted, “STOP!!” James freaked out and pulled to the side of the road thinking that I had gone into labor or that the car was about to explode or something (not that I’m pregnant or have any special impending explosion sensing powers). He was like, “What?” and I was like, “Hello? A camel! We have to get a family photo!” We had a photo taken a couple of years ago, (as you can see on the side of the blog) but we've had another baby since then and I decided it was time for an update.

So we all piled out of the car, Marie yelling, “Tamoh, tamoh, tamoh!” And running as fast as her little feet could carrier her toward the giant beast, and Elise being dragged out of the car complaining that we were interrupting her Veggie Tales movie. Obviously no real live hairy camel can compare to Larry the Cucumber.

The camel keeper guy set a ladder up and I climbed on first, then James handed up the baby. Suddenly a family camel photo did not seem like such a good idea. I mean what kind of mother holds her tiny baby in one arm while seated precariously nine feet in the air, on top of a wooly camel? Next up was Elise, still mad about us interrupting her movie, then Marie who was freaking out and shouting, “No tamoh... no wan it. No tamoh!” Finally James squeezed his way onto the saddle and the camel guy snapped a few photos.

Elise only lifted her head for the picture upon being threatened to have her movie taken away if she didn’t. Marie quietly cried, and I smiled while silently praying that the camel would stay still and none of my offspring would fall to their death.

Three pictures and a few dollars later we climbed down the ladder, I breathed a big sigh of relief, Marie went running toward the car as fast as her little legs could carry her saying, “No like tamoh. No wan it,” and Elise got back to her precious video.

Threats, smiles, tears... all in all a fairly normal family photo session. Except that instead of in front of a Christmas tree, it happened to be on top of a wooly camel.

I’ve thrown in a few extras I snapped of other tourists getting their camel experience. Enjoy.

These poor girls started screaming the second their dad put them up on the camel. I broke the camera out just a few seconds too late, but at least you all can still enjoy the look of betrayal and utter fear on their faces with me. . . sad but funny. It reminded me of watching kids getting on Santa's lap at the mall... the things parents do for a good photo.

I love this one... I think the camel is asking, "Okay, who's next?"

And two more happy tourists hop on.

1 comment:

Margaret said...

I loved this story! I laughed all the way through it.

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