TO THE OASIS
I tightened the sheet across my face so that only my eyes were revealed. The loose fitting gowns were comfortable, although they had a tendency of tripping me up with their swirling folds.
I climbed onto the wicker hamper and for lack of a better description, threw myself onto the back of the camel.
I joined the others in the pack where we waited patiently, silently. When the loud pop of the fun finally broke the silence, we were off.
The camels bounced hastily along the dirt track, their riders tossed back and forth on their make shift saddles. Despite me lack of experience, the terror I felt over being trampled every time I slid to one side kept me focussed. Before long I was inching ahead of the other racers.
It was intense and exhilarating, but I wouldn't risk looking back to see what kind of a lead I had. I operated under the assumption that it was enough.
One hour later, I crosse the finish line and slowly pulled my camel to a halt. The crowd was cheering excitedly as I carefully dropped to the ground before extending my arms upward in triumph. I had won!
I looked around the jubilant faces and basked in the pride and envy they cast back my way, then slowly peeled off my head scarf.
The Oasis loomed up before me, a massive resort better suites to the Caribbean than the Muskokas, but that was part of the charm. This camel race was an annual event and this year, I was the winner.
As the other competitors started to arrive, I slowly disappeared through the crowd and flopped with a splash into one of the three pristinely tended pools. I had hoped for a victory lap, but the robes were too heavy so I settled for the cool embrace of the water.
The To The Oasis race was a weird one for sure, bit that's why I entered. I never thought I would win, but I already knew what I would do with the prize money.
I would go to Egypt, or maybe Morocco, and experience this for real. For now though, I would celebrate my win in one of the weirdest challenges I had ever accepted.
I climbed out of the pool, grabbed some carrot sticks off the buffet table, and found my camel, lucky number three. She deserved a reward as much as I did.
She ha made it seem easy. As I fed her the handful of carrot sticks, the crowd went wild.
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