Friday, December 30, 2022

AlUla to Jubbah, Saudi Arabia, December 29, 2022

It was a long drive day, 544 km from AlUla to Jubbah-



Along the way: a military base that had a couple rocket launchers-


Sand-



and more-



There were herds of sheep, goats and camels scrounging in the sand-



We came across two accidents.  In the first one, a truck demolished a small car.  Someone, still alive we think, was being put in the ambulance as we drove by.  The second was a semi-



It was freezing in the bus, apparently there is only air conditioning up top, no heat.  We were wrapped in blankets and wearing all our gear, toques included-



The sand turned red and the road was hilly and winding-




We looked for a gas station for lunch but only drove by deserted and rubby ones-





More sandy scenery-




 



And then-



Our nice pavement disappeared-



and we were on very rough road-




Half the time we drove beside the road because it was smoother-


We were able to travel about 15 km/hour!  Luckily we didn’t have far to go and pavement was ahead-


We got to Jubbah to see rock art.  Human settlement of the area represented by the stone tools dates back to the Middle Palaeolithic Age (50,000 - 40,000 B.C.).  The site also has carvings from the Neolithic Period (10,000 to 4000 B.C.) and ancient Arabian Thamudic inscriptions from the first millennium B.C.  I have no idea which are which!  The rocks look like this-



and the carvings are usually on the black parts-














We are camping near the rock paintings and had time to do a “truck clean” .  Everything had to be scrubbed.  I hate truck cleans but it went well and most helped.  You always have some slackers; people who can’t look around and see what needs to be done or who are too stunned and lazy to ask-



Our drivers are leaving with the bus tomorrow morning.  Apparently a different bus, hopefully one with heat, and two drivers, one from Syria and an Egyptian are taking over.  We will never get them trained in 2 days!  We will cross into Jordan tomorrow, hopefully quickly and without issues and make our way towards the Dead Sea.


P.S.


One last shot of our coach-



Speed limit signs in Arabic starting at the far right and moving clockwise: 70, 60, 30, 50, 90 and 80 km/h-





































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