As if the heat wasn’t causing enough problems, the wind had started to pick up again as well, creating sand storms periodically as we walked, occasional tornadoes, and a sandpit inside our tent every night.
We saw wild horses, a few wild camels, chatted with the occasional oil workers, and continued to rely on truckers for water. We also had some bad experiences…
– In one village we were told there was no shop and given no information on when there would be one.
– In a roadside cafe we were threatened by a man forcibly going through our things and attempting to grab stuff from us. High tensions and it was escalating into a fight between him and Kieran until a drunk man stepped in and convinced the guy to leave.
– Whilst waiting for dark to set up camp, a goat herder sat nearby staring at us, forcing us to move on and find other camping.
– Waiting outside a shop a couple of kids were eager to try and go through our cart, they then tried stealing things whilst we were in the shop.
– Camping a good 3/4km out of a village, we were woken up one morning by a group of kids throwing large rocks at our tent, causing various tears in the outer shell. They ran off as we got out, only to return later with a man on horseback who asked if we were American and then told us to leave, no apology given.
Not that it was all bad though, we did have some good experiences.
– We met an Austrian cyclist going to Mongolia, Josef, been travelling for a month and was doing around 160km a day, nice guy.
– In one town an (admittedly drunk) older man kindly led us through to a shop, where we met a couple of English speakers and were given apples.
– Whilst flagging down cars for water one evening, every one that went past stopped and offered what they could, extremely helpful.
– We found a shop that sold Maxibon.
A mixed week, with some reminders that we were travelling through some actually dangerous places. We took note to take a sterner attitude towards strangers, and to camp further away from settlements.