On the seventh day….

6 okt

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“Time is stretched when you experience the new.”

I’ve been in SA for 6 days but the last day lasted twice as long as the days before. The days before I stayed at the Marriott hotel and if you stayed at international hotels you know nights, rooms and breakfasts are all the same, even in Saudi Arabia. Ok except for the dress code of the guests than maybe.


The Dutch Embassy booked the hotel for six days instead of seven so I had an option for the seventh day.

On my third day in Saudi Arabia I met Elske on her first day at the Dutch Embassy. After my presentation on Creative Thinking at the Glowork Event on Women Empowement we quickly shared stories, dreams and challenges.


I showed her our 40 year old VW T2 and she showed me her and Jules Toyota Landcruiser.



Normally I don’t have very long conversations about cars with women but I think we could have talked for hours about our cars and the places they brought us. “If you like you can join us on Friday?” Elske said after 3 minutes. “Really?”


So Friday they picked me up and after the best falafel in Riyadh we left to join their outdoor friends.

Their Toyota Landcruiser took us to a stunning wadi called Al-Ammariya


“Welcome to the 1000 stars hotel” Elske said and gave me the stretcher in a bag. “Find yourself an nice spot to look at the stars tonight.”


The sundowners on the balcony of the 1000 star Al-Ammariya Hotel were the best I ever had, dinner and the snacks that came from all directions were fabulous but the ceiling of the 1000 star Al-Ammariya Hotel was beyond expectations.

The shooting star I saw and the wish I had unfortunately was not met, my wife was still in Holland. During the night I normally grap my phone to check the time now I just checked the stars and started counting 1000, 999, 998 zzzzzzzzzzz

A light warm breeze touched my cheek and curled up the corners of my dry mouth.

That was the only thing missing. Water. After 5 minutes staring into the sunrise I took my shoes and checked them for insects. And what was next to my shoes? A bottle of water Jules had put there when he went to bed.

After six days in the Marriott Saudi Arabia would not be on my on my list to visit again but one night in the 1000 star Al-Ammariya Hotel I want to come back…..with my wife. Thanks Elske, Jules and the rest.




3 Responses to “On the seventh day….”

  1. paulinelerutte 6 oktober 2018 at 1:22 PM #

    Wat een ervaring! Doet me denken aan een vakantie in 1997 toen we een aantal nachten in Wadi Rum (Jordanië) waren. Nog nooit had ik zoveel sterren gezien. Fantastisch was dat.

  2. cornoltee 6 oktober 2018 at 1:51 PM #

    Pauline, heb Wadi Rum even opgezocht, bizar! Schijnt net Mars te zijn. Cool!

    • paulinelerutte 6 oktober 2018 at 2:49 PM #

      We hebben de eerste nacht nauwelijks geslapen en uren op onze rug liggen kijken naar de miljoenen sterren. Ik kan me helemaal voorstellen dat de laatste dag dubbel telde.

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