A Blast From the Antarctic Past

Standard

So this time two years ago, I was overwhelmed with excitement as I was about to set foot on the last spot before I checked visiting every continent! Antarctica was a long time in the making and I wrote and rewrote this post so many times that in the end, I couldn’t make this readable without it being a book!!

So I thought, what can I do to commemorate two years since I had the most life changing experience iv had? and then I thought….well I blogged about it before on my other blog and I wrote a journal that no one ever read! so why not take you guys (and myself) into my frame of mind of two years ago! ….please be nice, I was writing while I was really really cold!
(ps. slightly edited to include my personal journal)
Freezing Omanis - Getting into the Spirit 1

“Today, months after being selected for the 2041 Antarctic Youth Ambassador Program, I have landed in Antarctica. The first place I landed in is Mikkleson harbour on the Antarctic Peninsula.

The journey took me all the way across the world; from Muscat to Brazil to the city of Ushuaia in Argentina. In Argentina me and my team climbed to the top of a glacier and trekked through the national forest to prepare ourselves for the journey ahead, and this was all within moments of meeting them! the bond between us was forged instantly as if we had known each other for years…but then, they are the only people who get how much work it took to get here!

Freezing Omanis - Mt. Martial Glacier 2Freezing Omanis - Mt. Martial Glacier 3
Freezing Omanis - Ushuaia national forest 4
On the 3rd of March, the ‘Sea Spirit’ left Ushuaia heading south to the Antarctic Peninsula. The journey would take two days through the roughest waterway in the world; ‘The Drake Passage’….it’s here where I forged a strong bond with a few of the ‘tough’ ones that didn’t get seasick….after all, there were just a few of us that were enjoying the two day roller coaster ride rather than feel sick! I don’t even know how i’m able to write! god help me when I try to read this in the future (bwaha past me! I was able to read after consulting a cryptographer)
Freezing Omanis - Antarctica 6

Freezing Omanis - Antarctica 1

After two and a half days at sea, the Antarctic icebergs showed themselves shortly followed by land. Seeing those icebergs was something magical, everyone on the boat just ran to see them, it was a moment of awe where everyone was out of words, even the people who were laid up in bed with seasickness two hours before. I can’t describe it…the whole journey since I got to Argentina felt unreal, and i’m not exaggerating… my sight and senses don’t feel real, but seeing those icebergs was a hammer to the senses, it feels real and unreal at the same time and I’ve never felt so excited or so inspired… this is all by seeing a piece of floating ice…I already feel that this will be an emotional roller coaster.

Freezing Omanis - Antarctica 1 DSC_0309

I’ve never felt so excited, I was on the second Zodiac heading to the historic Nickleson harbor to learn about the area and rest for a few hours before trekking and listening to scientists as well as environmental specialists to develop my campaign for when I come back to the Sultanate. More so….this will be the moment it will happen, months of training and fundraising will be for this….I don’t even know what to write, I just feel very proud that I have my flag with me and a photo of my grandfather in my pocket.

Freezing Omanis - Antarctica 2Freezing Omanis - Antarctica 3
Tomorrow (the 6th) the ‘Sea Spirit’ will cross the Lemaire Channel and I will be spend the night on the ice….I can’t wait to see the stars, iv never seen anything like this sky before so seeing it from a completely remote place is beyond my imagination….for now..

Advertisements

Being a Motivational Speaker

Standard

I really love doing motivational talks! there is something about being on stage that fires me up and gets me really excited!

I recently did a talk for the American Women’s Group….and I realized a few things on why I really enjoy it!

DSC_9153

For one, i’m talking about one of the best parts of my life! it was a long and hard year but the result was the Antarctic….and sharing the photos alone gets me very nostalgic and excited!

timthumb

Secondly, sometimes…..I see the change in people’s eyes, when I talk about plastic bags, the look of shock and immediate action just appears on people’s faces!

1013438_573748239335835_1122704445_n

Its always fun though……the experience of the freezer gives people something to talk about! and its a good escape from the heat!

DSC_5603 DSC_5597 DSC_9166

But you know? it wasn’t always like this……I remember the first time I had to present to an audience.

That was back at uni, and it was a class of 10 people……I was so nervous that I felt ill! I couldn’t stop shaking and I almost murmured all my words!

Then again, when I had left for Australia, I was a very shy introverted guy that was too shy to hold a conversation. It was troublesome for me being in a new place, not knowing anyone AND being introverted and shy…….so I got myself a job in a suit shop where I had to talk to strangers and strike up a conversation ALL the time! it wasn’t easy to start but then I started loving it!

As for motivational speaking? that just happened after I came back from Antarctica during my press conference…..that was the first time I stood in front of people to share my story and I guess that’s how it happened!

163582_535489743161685_1561615320_n 150715_535489339828392_1027897767_n

Most of all, I love doing my talks at schools……In my opinion that’s what makes a change! young kids really are impressionable and when they hear why they should care, they start persuading their families!

If you ever have the time, please do come to one of my talks and tell me what you think!……and make sure you bring a jacket 😉

DSC_5613 935110_582646728445986_1921884273_n

Omani Petrolheaditis – Fueled by @Redbulloman

Standard

Omanis have a certain passion for the road…..growing up here, the open road stirs up some passionate emotions.
We didn’t have an outlet to let that passion out back then…and when the automobile association opened up the go kart track it was busy like nothing else…but then it closed down for a while…During that time I had left Oman to Australia and I fueled my petrolheaditis fairly well! Maybe a little too well…..I use to race V8 cars and it was just my thing!

Oman however has a little different kind of motor sport love….Omanis seem to love drifting!  When F&F: Tokyo drift came out, the cinema was full for weeks!!!…..almost a decade since I left Oman, and now that iv been back, petrolheaditis has taken a hold on young Omanis! From photographers to karters and racers!

RedBull seem to be very aware of that…..because their drift event hit the right spot! It brought in talented Omanis to do what they love most….burn rubber and be awesome!

DSC_5754DSC_5753DSC_5748

The afternoon started with a few games of guessing objects, horribly moving a ring through a wire (i didn’t event try cuz im horrible at it) and most importantly…..soothing sounds of fearsome cars!

DSC_5752

Red Bull were awesome to give us our Polaroid photo before the event kicked off!

DSC_5750DSC_5747

When the drivers got off to their sideways start I was really impressed……the accuracy of those drivers was just amazing! I have been exposed a little to the world of drifting as a spectator and I can tell you that this is just amazing!

DSC_5759DSC_5867

Here’s the thing with drifting, its not what hooligans on the streets think they are doing……..no, drifting is actually very controlled. If you call your self a drifter you better know how to control your car through an obstacle course sideways, otherwise you are just someone who like burning rubber.

DSC_5779

But why use words when I have photos of sideway action!

DSC_5963Action 2Action 3

A Turkish Getaway

Standard

I absolutely love my job….so for those who know me, it wont be a surprise that Iv always cashed in my holidays…..This time I needed to take this because well….I cant cash it in anymore! So my family and I decided we would look for a new place to see…..and the dart fell on turkey!

Now half of Oman has been visiting this place since the advent of the new Turkish shows that have been showing up this side of the world, so we thought we wont go to the usual cities like Istanbul!

Our plane took off and I got worried to start with…..the people started rushing and crowding with no respect to ques or priority. …..but that faded away the second I saw turkey!  From the air its such a gorgeous place!
After 2 flights and no sleep at all, we got to Antalya, and it looked so green and mountainous…..my kind of place! I saw the glimmer of so many solar panels.

DSC_6454

The hotel is a really cool concept,  sea life resort provides its guests with everything free of charge!  Food drinks, ice cream…..you name it, its yours! And the view is just stunning!

DSC_6470

We went to the mall next as we just had a short time before we all were going to crash from the lack of sleep…but I woke up when I got there…..Barney Stinson would feel like he is in heaven! Suites are just gorgeous and very cheap! The quality is top notch too!! In a non related topic….I now have a suit pyjama and a suit swimming outfit.

Not much done apart from a walk later to see the city but the adventure is yet to begin…..we will follow the trail of waterfalls tomorrow and 4×4 through forest and water terrains the day after! Ill try to fit in an hour for jumping off the side of a mountain strapped to a kite at some point 🙂

DSC_6466DSC_6459

 

________________________________________________________

A Second Glance

After spending some time in Turkey, I have to say……I have mixed feelings about the place.

It has great potential and some really great places but there are things that completely ruined it for me; for one….im absolutely sick of haggling over everything! including the food prices at restaurants!

secondly, while we did have some good times at the adventure trips, some of them were complete scams….a 4×4 trip pictured bashing through waters and going up some mountains in interesting terrain……we got a 1628 suzuki that the 4×4 didn’t work and the places we went to were the guide’s cousins house and his grandmas restaurant which they asked us in every stop to pay for something or the other…….

It’s really the first time I decided, im not that interested in coming back……

Non the less! The place had some amazing things to offer……..for a photographer like me, the waterfalls there make you want to stay the whole day around them!

DSC_6480 DSC_6515

Of course, you can’t forget Turkish coffee and the old Islamic architecture that has been made into shops! and the greek / roman ruins!

DSC_6703 DSC_6711DSC_6982

While the 4×4 trip was a total scam, our happy silly family wasted no time in just joking around and having fun! the view was great at 2 of the spots!

DSC_6832 DSC_6829 DSC_6773

And you cant forget the food……If I were to ever come back here, I would make it a point to invest all my time having the clotted cream and natural honey for breakfast!

DSC_7141 DSC_6929

If all else fails, then just relax in the woods on the mountain, get up there in a telefreak (and don’t forget the selfie) or enjoy a gorgeous sunset!

DSC_7216 DSC_7059 DSC_6743

First Post! Sands of Summer

Standard

Well…….its been a crazy year for me with so many things happening, I started blogging with the Freezing Omanis page and it was a great start! but now I feel that I need a new outlet….the current and future Freezing Omanis should carry that torch, its their story now 🙂

For my life now…..well, its so different from what it was a year ago! im much more addicted to the outdoors and well……..why not start my first post with that?

I just got my new 4×4 so I thought, why not break it in with a camping trip in the desert! its the last bit of the season before the desert turns to a open space oven!!!

We gathered and left off…not many of us, just the 3 cars……but the second we got to the sands we had some real fun!!!

DSC_3953

We set up the camp and it was nice, a bit warm so it was lazy to start with but once the sun got down the view got amazing!

DSC_3967 DSC_3966

The main reason why I love camping an the outdoors is the night sky…..the stars and the quiet isolation is just so calming! its always essential for me to get out and wind down and what better way than being disconnected while looking at an amazing campsite with a bunch of great friends!

DSC_3978 DSC_3990

The food and company were great but that view of the sands and the stars is amazing…..I don’t like to camp at campsites or anywhere near them for that reason, the light there just takes away from what you can see! …..well…..writing this makes me want to go back!

I even set up my sleeping bag on the car roof and slept under the stars, that’s the look I got from Breki in the morning….the “dude ur mad” look

DSC_4006 DSC_3993

Alas…..back to reality, but we had the best person to give us the desert send off! …..camel selfie anyone?

DSC_4047

On our way back we found a man selling honey and fruit on the way…..the freshest things you could find!

DSC_4147 DSC_4150

It was just a simple weekend getaway and this is the perfect way to figure out how i’m going to start writing this blog 🙂