Well we finally arrived at my mother's camp. You wouldn't believe what a horrendously long day we had today. I'm lying in my very hard, camp bed, writing this in the dark by torchlight. After Dad dragged us out of bed at the crack of dawn this morning to get to Heathrow on time, Alex and I got to the airport wayyy too early. Dad has always been a bit on the stressy side when we've had to be somewhere, so I sometimes take my time when he is trying to hurry me up, just to make my point. I don't like being pushed and hurried, especially when he is stressing unnecessarily and we still have so much time. But he always wins, and I'm shoved in the car with everyone else, earlier than we ever need to be, and only 90% ready.
So of course, we arrived at Heathrow three hours before the flight, and a whole hour before the check in desk could even check us in and take our luggage off us.
But once Dad left us after we did finally check in, me and Alex were able to chill. It was actually fun on the other side of the gate. Dumb-dumb spent nearly all his spending money on sweets and food, and some stupid game he cant even play while he's away. I bought some magazines for the journey and to read at the camp the other end.
I couldn't really focus on reading them, though. I sat at our gate for Medinabad intending to read in peace and quiet, but I was inwardly kind of excited at the thought of seeing Mum again. It's been soooo long since I saw her; over two months! Living at Dad's is fine, but it's kind of, every man for himself. The house is big and on five floors including the basement, so you could go days, if you wanted to, without seeing anyone. We make our own sandwiches when we're hungry, and watch our own TV's should we want to watch something different. Dad leaves the house for work before I'm up, usually, so I don't see him in the mornings. At weekends his stupid girlfriend is there, so I make myself scarce upstairs so I don't have to hear all her stupid giggling. I really miss Mum.
So anyway, we arrive in Medinabad, and Mum is there in the arrivals hall, waiting behind the barrier, beaming from ear to ear with her arms out wide to greet us. Alex drops his bags, leaving them for me to drag across the floor, and he runs to her and nearly knocks her over. I couldn't talk as I knew my voice would just quiver. I felt like crying when I saw her. I hope she didn't think I just didn't care about saying hello, and stuff. But she gave me a special look and a tight, tight hug, that meant, "Ive missed you", and I squeezed her hard. I wish she would come home.
The journey through the city was really weird. It was pretty crowded and noisy; there were people selling their wares, like carpets, pastries, even water and tea from samovars strapped to their backs. The smaller streets were lined with merchants and shops, colourful and brimming with stuff... children darted around the car, peering through the windows to look at us, and I realized it was probably because Alex was pulling faces at them, which didn't help. As we inched along, couple of boys climbed onto the side of the Land Rover and clung on. They just starred at us through the windows, creepy weird! I suppose they dont see many foreigners.
The sounds of the city were so different; I loved the sound that echoed above the hustle and bustle of the Mullas calling people to pray from the minarets on top of the mosques. I really liked that. It made me feel I was in a far away land... which I suppose I was! And the buildings were was so cool and different from home;. I love the onion shaped windows that you see on larger buildings, and the blue tiles with their intricate patterns. It reminded me of Aladin, or some other fairy tale. But I guess this is the same part of the world, so that would make sense.
Anyway, when we finally got out into the open desert, we had a bit of a chat, Mum and I. She told me about what they were excavating; this ancient warrior Queen's tomb, and her death mask. Sounds cool. We're seeing the skeleton tomorrow. But I had to tell her about Dad's girlfriend, which I didn't really want to incase she got upset, but she didn't seem to mind too much. Then I found out why. That over dramatic Italian archaeologist, Marcello, is here. We met him in London last summer. It's him who is running the whole dig. I am pissed. I thought we were going to have Mum to ourselves. I know he likes her, I felt it when he came over for supper that time. I was kind of annoyed with her when she told us he was here.
Well, I was kind of coming to terms with the fact that Marcello was out here, and we turn into this narrow pass between two cliffs and these two crazy, screaming armed men in uniform, jump out from behind a rock and hold us up and pull us out of the car! It was surreal.
They made us stand aside while they chucked everything out of the car! They were searching for something they thought Mum had hidden. Then when they couldn't find what they wanted, she was so cool and demanded they help put everything back in the car again! They looked so dumb re packing the car! Alex was trying not to laugh at them. But it was actually horrible and quite frightening. I've never seen guns before...especially pointing at me. I hope thats the end of them. Mum reported the whole thing as soon as we arrived, so hopefully they'll be arrested asap. I'm still a bit shaken, but I said I was OK. I think Mum was as scared as i was really but she didn't want us to know.
It looks kind of cool here at the camp, from what I could tell. Its like a little canvas village. All except the loos, that is. I told Alex had I known about the almost transparent canvas bathroom area, I would have stayed home. The rest looks OK though. I'll looking forward to seeing the Queen's tomb tomorrow. I've been reading up on ancient Mesopotamia, so I know a bit about the area and it's history. It's very cool being here. It really hasn't sunken in yet that we've travelled so far today.
Unfortunately, Marcello's kids are here at the camp too. I bet they're spoilt and boring. We'll have the 'pleasure' of meeting his offspring in the morning. Great! (not).
I'm tired and going to sleep now. More tomorrow.