shanlung (shanlung) wrote,

19-22 Feb 09 //Radwanski visit & Nizwa // Katie & Dommie to Wadi Fanja

Our good friends Richard Radwanski with his wife Candy and daughter Juliet came and stayed with us over the weekend of 19-21 Feb.

I got to know Richard and Candy when we worked together in South Korea on the High Speed Rail in 2001/2002. I left taking with me memories of that beautiful country and Richard left with more than just memories.

Our paths crossed again when we were together in Taiwan on the High Speed Rail project there.

I visited them with my wife and Tinkerbell when Juliet was a few months old. Sadly I did not write about that visit there and then. I wrote only on a fraction of outings with Tinkerbell as one weekend flowed into another weekend. So Juliet was very much the Tinkerbell family and not just Riamfada family.

They were living in Dubai and needed only 4 hours to drive to my place.

You know of my spare bedroom that sometimes Katie and Dommie made use of. So on that weekend, Radwanski family came over and kicked Katie and Dommie out.

It was such a delight to be with old friends again even if for a short while.

Photoset Richard's visit: our neighbourhood in

They arrived about 3pm on Thursday and recovered from their hard drive from Dubai.

Of course, they were introduced to Riamfada who occupied the 3rd bedroom. Juliet was too young to have remembered Tinkerbell. She was entranced with Riamfada who was on her best behaviour with Juliet and under my very watchful eye.

Later on, we all went on the neighbourhood walk accompanied by the Radwanski and then onto the nearby beach to collect shells. Dinner was at Dosteen where they discovered the delights of mutton kadai and chicken jafrazie.

It was early to bed for all of us.

Muscat is not a city of nightlife. That exist , but not of the scale of Dubai. Beside, we need to wake early and be off early the next morning.



Riamfada cued to fly to Juliet holding perch



Photoset Richard's visit: our neighbourhood in


Photoset Richard's visit: Nizwa souq and Al Hoota Caves

We decided that we will drive to Nizwa and to its souq.

My wife and I had tried this a few times before. On our own, we procrastinated and never managed to reach Nizwa before 1230 noon. As the soug ended about 12 , our drives there were not very useful.

But this time with the Radwanski family, we all started on our drive at about 830am, more or less as planned.

We all decided to go in one vehicle. My car had the back seat strung up with perch with my wife seating in the back with Riamfada. It was more practical to go with Radwanski. I would have wanted to drive as that would allow Richard the luxury of looking at the mountains that we would drive past. But I was the only one able to look after Riam in a crowded car in the front passenger seat.

I had the basket on my lap, and Riamfada was on the handle. I hold up a freshly cut perch for her to chew and chew away while Richard drove and the 3 girls seating at the back. That chewed up perch was very useful later on. When people wanted to touch Riamfada, I showed that perch to scare them how Riamfada chewed that.

We passed by scenery stark and beautiful, more than my photos managed to capture. As it was desert country with hardly any trees on the mountain sides, the folds, and stratas and layers of rocks were exposed to all that passed by.

It was paradise for geologist and Richard was a professor of geology. We were treated to his running commentaries as to what that layers represented as we made our way to Nizwa.

We reached Nizwa about 10 am and saw that famous souq that continued for hundreds of years as people brought their goods , their goats, their cattle in for sale and trade.

We left Nizwa to go to Al Hoota caves 20 minutes away. Radwanski family went in while my wife and I waited for them outside. We have been into the caves twice, and it was not safe to take Riamfada into the caves. Lots of groups were intrigued by Riamfada and I acted as ambassador of a flighted parrot with Riam as the star. Those people went away with Tinkerbell card to her website and perhapsthey might keep a flighted parrot one day.

It was interesting those who kept CAG never attempted to stroke Riam unlike those who never kept parrots. They obviously knew a CAG can bite and in the folder you can see the photo of that gentleman hand showing the blue black bites his CAG gave him.








Photoset Richard's visit: Nizwa souq and Al Hoota Caves

As with all good things, they came to an end too soon. Radwanski family left for Dubai the next day in the afternoon.

Katie & Dommie at Wadi Fanja

Photoset Wadi Fanja with 2 cats + 1 bird

I had taken 2 days leave. On Sunday 22 Febb, we decided to take Katie and Dommie to Wadi Fanja.

Dommie enjoyed the ride there getting up to my wife's lap to look out of the window we speed past the countryside. Katie turned out to be a scaredy cat and stayed under my seat during the entire drive.

When we reached Wadi Fanja, we set up base camp in the shade of that same thorn tree. Dommie joined us readily. Katie came out and hide under the car for half an hour. She then joined us.

We did not bother with the harness for the cats at all this time.

After an hour or so when I felt the kitties settled in the surrounding, I decided to walk to the wadi. Dommie came when called and followed us. Katie refused to leave base camp despite all our callings.

A couple of hours later, I tried it again. my wife even tried to carry Katie to the water. But it was clear Katie was afraid to leave that base camp.

With our picnic lunch and books, that day passed by very pleasantly. Even if a group in their SUVs decided to 'bash' that wadi. I felt sorry for the plants and fishes that got trashed for that kind of fun.

Photoset Wadi Fanja with 2 cats + 1 bird










wadi bashers

Photoset Wadi Fanja with 2 cats + 1 bird


If what I wrote help you and you like to help, give a thought
for the wildlife sharing our planet.
Do write that cheque to Gerald Durrell wildlife trust

or to any wildlife conservation body of your choice


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