Saturday, when we went to the Viking Festival, the kids were watching the Vikings in battle and Addie turned to her dad and said “I want to be a fighter when I grow up.” Perhaps the battle introduction was a good precursor to our visit to Oman. Afterall, the national symbol of Oman is a picture of two daggers crisscrossed in their scabbards.
Today, we left the Viking land of Norway of fjords and glaciers and traveled southeast to the desert-land of Oman, where frankincense trees bring shade to the wilderness and palm trees provide delicious dates for nourishment. In Oman the oil is rich and, while we were limited in our country choices for “O” (Oman is the only country that starts with “o”), we actually have a friend who works in Oman on an oil rig and so it has meaning for us, too.
This wonderful friend was able to bring us a great Omani storybook and some money, too, and, true to Omani heritage, the tale was one of an Omani warrior and the money pieces all bear the national symbol. But, daggers and warriors are not all that Oman is known for. I mentioned oil and frankincense, but there is also a culture of welcoming outsiders, particularly among the bedouin people that would put our efforts in hospitality to shame.
In our traditional Monday (oops, celebrated Monday at the beach for Family Day) fashion, we began with geography, locating Oman on the globe, coloring flags and maps, and then dove into our new books, perfect for boys!
The white on the flag symbolizes peace and prosperity, the red-Omani blood, and the green-Islam and Oman’s fertile land. In the far left corner is the national symbol.
This great story is about a boy who wants to be a warrior so he makes up a tale about how he has killed a hundred, drowned another hundred and released a hundred. The tale is true except that he is referring to flies and the Sultan, believing him to be a true warrior sends him out as the lead General against enemies and eventually a dragon. In the end, the only thing Ali the warrior ended up killing were flies.
So here we are, in Arabia. It’s fun, it’s exciting, and makes me feel ready for adventure!