• Short Summary

    Nomadic Arab desert dwellers rubbed their eyes and gazed in astonishment as they watched a caravan of 27 camels move slowly across the desert in Tripolitania, Libya - for each camel was ridean by an Englishman or American.

  • Description

    Nomadic Arab desert dwellers rubbed their eyes and gazed in astonishment as they watched a caravan of 27 camels move slowly across the desert in Tripolitania, Libya - for each camel was ridean by an Englishman or American.

    A 27 strong party had hired the camels in order to enjoy a holiday with a difference in the Tarhuna district of Libya.

    Led by Flying Officer Leslie Littler of RAF Idris who first mooted the idea, the party consisted of 17 members of the Royal Army Service Corps stationed in tripoli, four Americans (including two women), five Royal Air Force personnel (including two wives), and an Arab guide.

    They spent three days in the desert travelling some 50 miles on their camels and visited an ancient farmhouse to see a 400 year old petrified body known a the Dead Man of Tarhuna, searched Roman ruins and made friends with the villagers of Sugh El Guma (Friday Market).

    For the men of 38 Company Royal Army Service Corps, the trip formed part of their adventure training programme, for not only did they learn how to ride camels but they camped in the desert at night "under the stars" without tents or beds, and cooked their own meals.

    "But why don't you use your motorcars?" asked the amused Arabs when they hired their camels to the English and Americans.

    After the first few hours of riding, many of the party were asking the same question for the art of riding a camel cannot be mastered quickly and takes about a year to become really proficient.

    Veteran rider, Flying Officer Littler, who has owned six camels during his stay in Libya, taught the members of the party how to make the camel kneel in order to mount and move off when the rider was "in the saddle"."Zaa!" and "Barra!" are the commands for "Go" and "Oos!" for stop.

    But camels are unpredictable and often stubborn animals and there were several minor mishaps - camels refusing to stop, others going in the wrong direction-before the riders became used to their mounts and set off into the desert from the village of Sidi Sharaf on their off-beat holiday.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA2Z9Y7J6JKI8R8EUCT7JL8S7OL
    Media URN:
    VLVA2Z9Y7J6JKI8R8EUCT7JL8S7OL
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    01/01/1963
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:05:24:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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