Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

  • Photo: James L. Stanfield @ NatGeo. Close-up of Bactrian camel. Just like their cousins, the dromedary or Arabian camels, Bactrian camels have built-in protection from the desert sand: long lashes and bushy brows keep sand out of their eyes, and their nostrils close to prevent sand from getting in.
  • Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is? (Khuus, khuus, khuus.)

Springtime in the Gobi is as life-giving as it is treacherous. As the -45-degree lows of winter yield to 100-degree summertime highs, the traditional livestock of the area’s Mongolian herders start to give birth. Risks are many. Shaggy Bactrian camels (two humps!) are pregnant for 13 months, and usually give birth to a calf every second year. But the harsh, dusty climate is unforgiving, and it is not uncommon for mother or baby to perish during or after delivery. The result is often orphaned babies and grieving mothers who need one another—but don’t have any filial bonds.

After centuries in the desert, the nomadic herders have developed a unique musical ritual to help form these bonds, or reestablish one when a camel mother has rejected her own offspring. In the half-light of dusk or dawn, a musician wields his instrument, usually a horsehead fiddle, known as a morin khuur, or a Mongolian flute. Everyone present wears their best clothes, out of respect for the rite. The mother and calf are tied together, and, on the orange dunes, another musician begins to chant: “khuus, khuus, khuus.”

At first, observers say, the mother either ignores the calf altogether or lashes out by biting or spitting at it. The “coaxer,” at this point, adjusts the melody based on the behavior. The singer begins to weave elements of poetry or song into the tune, to mimic the sound of the camel’s walking, running, and bellowing. After many hours of this, it is said, the mother and calf begin to weep. The spell is cast, and the animals are joined for life.

~ Natasha Front, excerpt from The Transcendental Ritual of Mongolian Camel Coaxing May Soon Be Lost Forever. Khuus, khuus, khuus. (Atlas Obscura, August 31, 2017)


Notes:

  • Khuus = “Service” in Somali (via Google Translate)
  • Photo/Article: Thank you Nan.
  • Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

  • Quote: Thank you Rob @ The Hammock Papers
  • More to this story – Amazing Facts by Doug Batchelor with the Beginning of Wisdom. “Abdul Kassem Ismael (A.D. 938 to 995) became Grand Vizier of Persia. Legend has it that the avid reader was so enthralled with literature and learning that he never left home without his personal library. The 400-camel caravan carried 117,000 books and must have been more than a mile long! Nevertheless, Ismael’s camel-drivers were also librarians, each responsible for the books on his camel, and could locate any book almost immediately because the animals were trained to walk in alphabetical order.”
  • Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

Men lead a recently purchased camel ahead of the Eid al-Adha festival, a Muslim holiday, in Peshawar, Pakistan. (By Fayaz Aziz/Reuters in wsj.com Photos of the Day August 28, 2017)


Notes: Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

Dear David:

Last week I was very fortunate to be at the Farnsworth Museum in Rockland, Maine. The moment I saw this sculpture, I knew it needed to be sent to you, the best-known anywhere collector of camels.  It is a very, very tall camel by a favorite Maine artist, Blackie Langlais. His work is all over Maine (and the rest of the world), made mostly of found materials and wood. This link takes you to his bio and a map showing the locations of many of his publicly accessible sculptures. The second link is to the Farnsworth Museum.”

Peace,

Nan Heldenbrand Morrissette (August 15, 2017)


Thank you Nan!


Notes: Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

Today’s post (sadly) inspired by: Last Orca Born In Captivity At SeaWorld Dies At Just 3 Months Old. (And maybe there’s a message here…). Here’s a picture of Kyara swimming with her 25-year-old mother Takara.


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Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

  • Photograph: Benito Hermis (Muscat, Masqat, Oman) via NatGeo. Traditional Camel Race (Feb 25, 2017). Thank you Susan.
  • Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?


Notes:

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