Description of Palmyra Desert Baghdad Cafe
We took an official school trip to Palmyra in March. (Read more about Palmyra in the Ruins section.) On the way there we travelled through the deserts of Syria. This was real desert. When I went to Makkah and Madinah I thought it would be sandy desert but it was just rocky and barren. Syrian deserts were more like I thought a desert was. It’s just sand, sandy, hot and miles and miles of it in every direction. Every now and then we saw little white bedouin tents or a shepherd with his herd with his face all covered with that Palestinian scarf.
There’s a picture of me writing in my journal just contemplating what we were seeing out the windows. (One day I’ll add it here there was alot of nice stuff I wrote.)
I just could not believe where I was. On a bus, with a whole class full of Muslim students of the Deen in the middle of the Syrian desert travelling to see ancient ruins. SubhanAllah, SubhanAllah, SubhanAllah. Only 6 months before I was working in a corporate office feeling so helpless at the path my life was taking. You know I learned that we can *think* we are controlling our life, but we really aren’t. Allah is really moving our destiny and can move us from place to place and we truly do not know in which land we will die.
So we were on the Road to Baghdad when all of the sudden this little rest stop called the ‘Baghdad Cafe’ appears literally like a mirage out of the desert. So we got out and checked it out. Basically it’s a tourist attraction/bedouin camp/country store/rest stop. It was actually quite nicely set up. There’s adobe buildings that are a mosque. Bedouin tents open to the public so you can see what the inside of one traditionally looks like. There are also some animals including this really scary dog that we were all afraid of. And then there were shells! That’s what we said.. shells in the middle of the desert!? Apparently they’re FOSSILS, fossils from this desert from the time it was an OCEAN! If that doesn’t blow your mind…I dunno what will. Also, check out the panaromic view. It was like we were on some moonscape or on Tatua? Star Wars fans I forget which planet Luke Skywalker was born on