Thursday, March 10, 2011

luck, or a general lack thereof

I don't know anything about being lucky.  From a young age, I realized that my sister had gotten all of my family's hereditary luck.  She won several grocery store raffles by the age of ten, was always standing on the right square at the cake-walk, and always beat me playing Monopoly by NEVER landing on my property.  

My general lack of luck doesn't affect my life too much these days.  I have stopped buying raffle tickets and don't patron any of MS's many casinos.  But, occasionally, I decide to leave Jackson and go somewhere else.  Something happens on every trip that confirms, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the fact that I might should have stayed at home. 

My latest example:  this February, Gates and I went to Israel and Jordan with a group of Mississippi Episcopalians.  One of the most impressive stops we made was to Petra, one of the New 7 Wonders of the World.  It's also the temple hidden in the desert where Indiana Jones finds the Holy Grail in the Last Crusade movie.  

Before Petra became a national park/tourist site, a group of bedouin lived and worked there.  When the government set up the park, they decided that the bedouin would continue to work there, setting up cafes, souvenir shops, postcard stands, etc.  They also have a thriving business offering novelty camel rides. 

Now, I know better than to try to ride a camel.  I am not coordinated.  As such, I don't like skates, bikes, horses, or really any situation where I can fall off something and onto the ground.  But, the peer pressure to ride a camel was pretty intense.  The older people in my group were riding the camels around in a circle....Gates rode the camel around in a circle...Gates really wanted to ride the camel for a km or so, and he wanted me to ride one too.  Eventually, I decided that I was being silly and that I could do it.  We made a deal with a camel driver to pay him 20 Jordanian dinar for the two of us (about 30 dollars), and he brought the camels over.

Gates got on his camel first.  All was well.  But....the SECOND that my camel stood up, Gates' camel bit mine.  On the tail.  And wouldn't let go.  My camel went crazy.  It ran in a circle, it tried to throw me off...and the camel driver couldn't get it to stop.  I was screaming.  Gates was trying to talk to me.  It was terrible, and I was SURE that I was going to fall off the camel.  After what seemed like hours of this, the camel stopped being horrible.  I had not fallen off.  Life returned to normal.  Sure, I cried (out of relief) when I got off the camel fifteen minutes later, but I was still able to take pictures of Petra.   And our camel driver got this one of us...I think I am masking the fear pretty well!!


  1. This post immediately brought this memory to mind:

    There is a reason why we are such good friends.