Camels in the Sky
Nominated | Book Awards 2019 | Translated into English
Camels in the Sky ()
Journeying from the green, rain-soaked Kerala into the amphitheatre of the Sun, our traveller-journalist finds that there is no better metaphor than the desert to instil the lessons of life and death, love and hatred, thirst and water. From a single shower of rain which brings the gaaf tree back to life after a decade to the ever-shifting dunes of gold and thousand-year-old sand palaces, the mysterious poetry of the desert is everywhere on display, if one but has the eye and heart to see it. As the deserts of Nafud, Dahna, and Rub’ al Khali in Arabia both embrace and trap the travellers, the outpouring of the landscape’s longing for rivers recalls a past filled with water. This narrative describes the history, prehistory, archaeology, legends, folklore, and travails of the émigré Asian work force that tames the harsh desert as never before.
V. Muzafer Ahamed is the periodicals editor of Madhyamam Daily, Kerala, India, and winner of the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award (2010) for travel writing.
P.J. Mathew is a bilingual journalist with two decades of experience in English journalism and three decades in Malayalam.