Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I would be moving to a foreign country to live, let alone a country in the Middle East. Over the 2009 Christmas and New Year’s holidays, my husband Roger and I discussed what we wanted the next part of our life to be like. He thought that before retiring, he would like to do one more airport project but only if he could find something very interesting. I half-jokingly agreed that would be fine but could he try for an exotic location? As usual, Roger came through and soon we were headed to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. This blog is a recap of our "leap-of- faith" wanderings around the Middle East and beyond. We joyfully share these expat experiences.

Monday, March 17, 2014

How to Judge a Camel Beauty Contest

Note to readers: This is the final blog of a three part series about our adventure to the Al Dhafra Camel Festival. Top 10 Tips for Enjoying the Al Dhafra Camel Festival, Camel Bling-Bling and How to Judge a Camel Beauty Contest
An Arabian Asayles Beauty Queen.
The first time I heard about a Camel Beauty Contest I laughed. I had no idea these goofy-looking beasts with the big hump had a lot in common with very valuable majestic thoroughbred horses. I learned at the camel festival that a camel’s value, performance and beauty, just like a thoroughbred’s, are determined by their skeletal structure, the sleekness of their coat and the all-important pedigree. Both can cost an absolute fortune.

There is a disparaging saying, “A camel is a horse designed by a committee” because its parts don’t go together. But, I tell you that after our forays into camel festival beauty contests, I believe that a camel is far more complex and has a beauty all-to-its own that can rival a thoroughbred any day. 

Now that Roger and I are semi-pros on the camel festival circuit, I think it is time to impart what we’ve learned about judging a camel’s beauty. I am certain that newly un-employed American Idol judge Simon Cowell is rolling his eyes and touting that little “I can’t believe I am hearing this” smirk. But just eat your heart out Simon, this is way out of your judging league.