Day three started for me dancing in my room to Yasalam Ya Dubai song, yes I know, it’s bad, but the excitement was hard to beat. In between I took some pictures of the Saudis passing by my window, unbeknownst to them of course… Had breakfast in the breakfast hall with the gang, Mohammed said the coffee was not as successful that day as it was the day before, he also said we won’t have any place for bathroom break until mid-day, so maybe drinking that coffee was not such a smart idea (remembering the story of going to the Ice Cave lol) but in the worst of case you could give back to nature.
Before we got out of Abha, the girls of the group tried to high-jack the van and have the ladies only party, but the guys convinced us that we should let them drive *even though the day before we spent 30 minutes getting the trusty Hyundai out of the parking due to some tightness and it is believed that only because of our cheerleading we managed to succeed* lol. This day we were set to go explore the Village Bahi Asir Al Jahma, which is so close to Yemen that you can hear the military planes flying up and down the area all the time and not for a good reason sadly.
As we were driving towards the village, the landscapes became more rocky and less green as we were going away from the high mountainous areas, where there is the most rainfall of the season, but interestingly enough, there were a lot of mountains or hills that looked just like the landscapes of Cape Town, RSA. At least the way that I remember them.
Balqees was singing her songs for us in the car, the roads as usual full of unexpected speed bumps, making us hope that our heads will not hit the roof as hard as last time, but moods were elevated and expectations were high.
When we reached the area, Mohammed casually told us that there might be snakes living in those high grasses we were about to cross, so we shouldn’t be alarmed if we see some… but thankfully we didn’t encounter snakes, just saw a dead cat on our way… not sure what would have been better.
The village was as promised, the photographers dream – red clay houses with traditional decorations inside against bright blue sky, I honestly felt overwhelmed and we only had limited time to explore it…
You could spend a whole day there.
We had to make a bit of a climb to get up but we managed without casualties, but if you are planning to go – wear something orange and decent hiking shoes.
The houses are slowly deteriorating and collapsing under the rains and sun, so one room full of Asiri Qatt art that Mohammed wanted to show us was already sadly destroyed by elements. And it’s only been a couple of years that he has visited this place last time. Anyhow, what we saw impressed us beyond belief…
I don’t know whose idea was that but someone proposed we go up this building which must have been a watch tower.
And though it does look solid, it was quite an adventure to go up… and I can’t believe how effortless we look in this photo after climbing and sliding, and crawling and pulling each other up…
But it was fun, and the view was decent. However, the time was running out and we had only 15 minutes to explore the village on our own. And I wish to tell you that I used them productively to do a little timelapse or long exposure of the clouds, but no, I was just roaming around in amazement, getting my clothes dirty in orange dust and not believing I am actually on these lands, 50 kms away from Yemen.
I honestly don’t know what to say, I just hope this place doesn’t get crumbled down by the sea of influencers not respecting it. It feels powerful, it feels full of potential and if it was closer to some other landmarks there would be hope the government would restore it to it’s former glory, but apparently there is just too many villages that were abandoned in exchange for the comfort of the city life and who are we to blame them…
At the time of the second prayer of the day, we had to get in the car and go for lunch, accompanied by more military planes and more Balqees songs…
The next adventure would be to go see the Khawlani Tribe of Jazan mountains performance of dancing in their flower crowns with traditional daggers… but apparently people can’t read more than two minutes of content and this one is already 5 so I will have to tell about that experience in the next post.
Thanks for tuning in,