Bentley: Oh! Well, I was gonna ask, um, what is it Major Lawrence, that attracts you personally to the desert?
Lawrence: It’s clean.
Bentley: Well now, that’s a very illuminating answer.

Having lived for some time in Phoenix, and having run in the desert many times, I’ve never quite appreciated it as much as I do now. But, it is different now, I’m running through it. From one side to the other is an entirely different endeavor than living in it. It is as different as running across hot coals and standing still in them. No one wants to be burned up at the stake, but warming up next to the fire is nice.

As I ran yesterday, so many quotes from Lawrence of Arabia were gesticulating in my brain. Yes, I know that that word means to make or use gestures,  especially in an animated orexcited manner with or instead of speech. But that is the way they seemed. No longer were they words or thoughts…I was actually living them. I am Lawrence and Ali trying to take Aqaba by crossing the Devil’s Anvil.

“There is no water between here and A’qaba. In 20 days the camels will start to die. If the camels die, we too will die.”

The desert is quite liberating. It is quite freeing really. You can see forever, and there is nothing but you and it. Quite simple when you think of it. It provides the training ground with which one can test their character, the anvil for ones mettle.

“The desert is an ocean in which no oar is dipped.”

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