In today's modernizing culture there is rarely an opportunity for one to get away from all the demands of life and be silent. There is something truly captivating about being silent. Not having a constant stream of texts, emails, and messages bombarding your phone or computer is refreshing. Last night we got to experience one of the most beautiful moments thus far on our trip. Allow me to share this moment and how it is forever embedded in my memory.
We are currently in Al-Ula. It is a small Bedouin desert town. A simple yet magnificent town. Our tour guide, Khalid, wanted to take us out into the desert to make us some Arabic coffee. After about a 15 minutes of driving, we find ourselves with only sand dunes and wind carved mountain-sized rocks surrounding us. We began unpacking the utensils necessary for making traditional Arabic coffee, and for just a moment the sand and mountains we found ourselves between became our fortress, in which we were hidden from the world. We were off the map, with no technology, only each other's company for enjoyment. Khalid prepares the Arabic coffee with the fire we help build. We set up our mat on a sand dune. Then we sit together drinking Arabian coffee, laughing, and of course eating dates. It is discovered that Joe and I posses the ability to spit date seeds nearly 20 feet! Quite an admirable talent if you ask me. For just a moment we joined in the thousands of desert travelers before us that would have come upon this traditional Bedouin hospitality. How this tradition of coffee and dates has been passed down from generation to generation is truly remarkable. We were honored to partake in this tradition.
The sunlight was leaving us, but that was only helping to set the stage for the show that was to take place. Then twinkling desert stars begin to emerge from behind the darkening sky. For just a moment the wind carved rocks become the ballroom hall, the sand becomes a stage, the distant wind becomes the choir, and the stars become the spotlight for the dance that was to take place. For just a moment our thoughts and soul were free to dance together. It was an eloquent waltz in the beauty of the moment. Once again we joined with the thousands of desert travelers who became the audience of this precious dance. For just a moment we stood in reverence for the beauty surrounding us. For just a moment we were silent.
It is no surprise to me why the Bedouin people chose and still choose to live out in desert. They understand the riches found in these lands. The desert is a vast treasure chest filled with precious moments like this.
So today I simply challenge you to take some time to be silent. No phone, computer, iPad, or Ipod. Just be silent and let the moment carry you.
We are forever thankful that we have had the opportunity to experience some of these rare moments. Saudi Arabia is truly a beautiful land.