Times of Oman
#ReadersResponse: Camels have played an integral role in Oman
September 13, 2017 | 8:17 PM
by Gautam Viswanathan
The camel is a strong and majestic animal, said residents in the Sultanate of Oman.
 
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There are many animals that help symbolise the spirit and ethos of a nation. While the Bald Eagle has been a symbol of the United States, and the kangaroo and koala are held dear by Australians, the camel is the living embodiment of the determination and hard work that characterises the residents of the Sultanate of Oman. Those who lived in the country were eager to praise the ship of the desert, which is a friend to Bedouin traders, a loyal beast of burden, a willing pack animal, a close companion, and so much more.

“All pet animals tend to run away from humans when you come near them, but I have twice experienced a baby camel which comes closer to humans without hesitation,” said Ajmal Husain. “It makes me feel so, so loved. Many animals are friendly with humans a few days after they’re born, but baby camels show affection from the very first day onwards.

“Camels can move across the desert very easily, thus providing a mode of transportation for people in these areas,” added Dadz Derigay. “Their eyes are just so unique because they don’t allow excessive sunrays to get into them. They eat almost nothing and just drink from waterholes, so if you own a camel, feed him good and fresh water to drink, because for a camel, it is always a long tiring day.

Residents in Oman were happy to point out the integral role the camel had played in shaping Oman and the rest of the Middle East to what it has become today. “Camels are very useful to the lives of the people of the desert,” said Gracia Angeles. “Being the kings and queens of the desert means that this is their territory and they are the masters of the place. We need to take care of them by all means. “Camels are among the living legends in all the Gulf countries,” opined Onocad Dlanor. “I wish to go for one ride together with my wife, as it is on my bucket list.”



Although the camel may not appear to be a traditionally beautiful animal to many, its gentle disposition towards those it trusted and its reputation for being a hardy desert dweller appealed to many. “Camels reflect the traditional mode of transport,” added Raheema Shaik Mahmood Reems. “It’s one of the most loved animals and is a living legend of the desert. Its beauty, its strength, and its beautiful eyes make it a truly amazing animal.

“It’s the favourite companion of the desert people,” she added. “I’ve always wanted to ride on a camel which reflects the eye catching and stunning beauty of the desert,” while Syed said, “the camel is a strong and majestic animal. It is quiet but clever, has carried people and cargo, has built and sustained lives across distant lands and foreign places and is truly the ship of the desert. They are a glimpse into our past.”

Many residents in Oman also expressed the desire and thrill of riding a camel. “The camel is very strong and can move well in the desert,” said Aisha Muhammad. “I have only climbed once on a camel and I wish to ride these majestic animals more often.” “These animals are truly amazing,” added Johnny Zhang. “I work on oil fields, and they always accompany me, so I am far from lonely.”

—gautam@timesofoman.com

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