This is part II of a three part series. If you have not read part I, you may be confused.
When I last left off, we had just arrived at the camel site. Up until this point, I was really looking forward to the safari as I thought it would be a wonderful and exciting new experience. I pictured myself majestically trotting around the desert, Lawrence of Arabia style, looking very formidable while I maneuvered my steadfast camel with great ease.
But when I actually saw the camels up close- thence began my reservations. It suddenly occurred to me: camels are really big.
I looked upon the large animal with fright. It’s four enormous legs. Its giant, yellow teeth. Its snot covered nose. This was no friendly pony at the petting zoo. This was an untamed, brutish beast from hell. I gulped- this was the devil the rickshaw driver was talking about.
On top of that, my ten personal and very sacred commandments once again came to mind. I found myself in conflict:
The thing about animals is, they are animals. I don’t particularly trust them. They act on instinct. They are not reasonable creatures like you and me. If a person gets angry and wants to kill me, I can always rationalize with them:
But if a lion gets angry with me:
Only get in the ring with an opponent you know you can beat. That’s my logic. Paranoid you say? Go talk to Christopher Reeve, Steve Irwin, or Captain Hook and ask them what they think. Oh wait, you can’t…because they have all been murdered by animals.
Thus, my complete lack of faith in animals and the fact that I was recently cursed to hell by a rickshaw driver made getting on this camel seem like the worst idea ever. But once again, not being completely insane, the rational part of my brain started working.
I climbed on top of the sitting camel. As it stood up, I felt like I was being pushed up high into the sky by hydraulic gears. The camel moved a few feet forward and I held on like it was the great earthquake of 1982 (????).
Gerald sensed my fear, “You should name your camel. Then it will be like a pet.”
A pet!!?? A pet is fluffy and sweet. A pet can be controlled with a leash and collar. A pet is a hamster, not a enormous beast with a tongue the size of a skateboard.
Instead of expressing my opinions I just mouthed: “Good idea.” I looked at the camel. What would be an appropriate title for this aggressive beast that could not be reasoned with? I needed something fierce:
“I shall call her Beyonce Giselle Knowles.”
The camel guide waved his arms for us to get moving. Beyonce Giselle Knowles and I trotted forth. But as it turned out, she was not the fierce and wild beast I had previously thought. She was quite the lackluster camel. Slow as a rock. Each step forward was grudgingly taken, and it seemed to me that Beyonce shared the same enthusiasm about carrying me around as I had about riding her. Within five minutes we were already way behind everyone else.
The camel guide yelled from afar, “KICK! KICK.”
Kick Beyonce? No way. Don’t get me wrong- I’m no animal rights activist. I have no problem hitting things when the situation calls for some good old beatin’. But I sure did not want to irritate the large creature that my safety rested in. Would you smack the pilot flying your plane for not going fast enough? Nate.
“KICK! KICK!” I pretended I couldn’t hear him. The camel guide waited for me. When I reached him he took a stick and whipped Beyonce right in her butt as hard as he could.
WHACK. Beyonce farted and sped off. We raced forward passing the other camels left and right. She kept on farting. We kept on racing along. With each fart we rocketed forward. The effects were astonishing. Farting was to Beyonce as eating spinach was to Popeye.
Soon enough, we were leading the pack.
It didn’t smell so great, but it felt great. I was the leader of the camel brigade and my noble steed, Beyonce, was the alpha camel. I could feel her confidence as we headed the pack. She could feel mine. Her farts had not only acted as rocket fuel, but also as the adhesive that formed our friendship. Together we confidently trotted along as the best in the safari. No two things were more connected in the entire universe than we; it was the perfect camel and rider symbiosis. I was one with her and she was one with me.
It was a glorious day for the both of us as we navigated through the desert landscape with our heads held so very high and the wind flowing through our hair. Eventually we reached the spot where we would be spending the night. Beyonce knelt down and let me off. I patted her on the head and smirked at the thought of the rickshaw driver:
You are not the devil, Beyonce Giselle Knowles. You are my friend. My best friend foreva.
[end part II, final part coming I'm not sure when]