Saturday, January 23, 2010

48 hours in Oman

Two days in Oman, a weekend road trip to Muscat, 48 eye-opening hours, and then home again with so many good, unexpected stories, I don't know where to start ...

With Mr. Andy from Manila, the Filipino musician who interrupted Disco Inferno night at the Falaj Hotel to step up and deliver a searing rendition of the guitar solo from Hotel California?

With the Pakistani bar where men sat in rows of straight-backed chairs watching a trio of maidens from their home country perform come-hither dances, while the manager bought me a drink and explained, passionately, that nothing bad could happen to the girls because as soon as the bar closed they were whisked away and "locked up" until the next night's performance?

With that wicked cut I made on the eight ball that endeared me to my Omani pool partner and led to us commanding the table for five straight games?

With Olaf and Anna, the charming couple from The Netherlands who shared after-dinner wine and stories and a spectacular view from the rooftop restaurant at the Marina Hotel?

With the beauty of a place where the mountains do, literally, tumble into the sea, and the unassuming city finds purchase in whatever nooks and crannies it can?

Or with Mr. Hussain, the world's loudest cab driver, who practically bullied me into taking a sight-seeing ride but turned out to be the world's best tour guide, a proud speaker of five languages (I heard him use them all) and Oman's best PR agent?

I can't choose ...


  1. Good to hear your pool game is sharp, Roberto. You'll need it when you get back to the States. I have always feared your bank shots, but if you're starting to hole those dreaded cuts there might be cause for concern...

  2. Dude, you're totally making this stuff up, aren't you?

  3. Every word is true, even the most unbelievable of them all: the cut on the eight ball.