Camel Trekking: How not to shit your pants

It’s all fun and games until you shit your pants.

Eric never gets sick. So to have him be the sickest I’ve ever seen him in 13 years, during the most expensive trip we’ve ever taken…was nothing short of heartbreaking. It started in Marrakech with the night market street vendors. So what if it’s not sanitary?

It smells. SO. good.

We met up with our fellow travelers in Marrakech for a two week trek across Morocco with our trusty guide Kristy. Eric missed the first day of touring the city, opting to rest up and be healthy for the Atlas & Sahara trek.

After several fabulous days road tripping through the High Atlas (see my three week Morocco itinerary for more) we arrived at the edge of the Sahara. I’d done this trip before and like a kid counting down for Christmas, I wiggled in my seat…excited to share this magical place with my man. He’d bounced back and was feeling better. Day 1 was a hit!

Eric sunset Sahara

When I saw him shivering I knew we were in trouble. Shivering…in the Sahara. He was a good sport hiking/camel riding but looking back on this photo I think the signs were there. One of these kids is more excited than the other.

Eric camel

And then he went down. Fever, achy, shivering, sweating. He slept for 32 hours. The crew, bless them, would move him from tent to Jeep, even putting a mattress in the Jeep for him, driving him to our next rest spot as the group cameled on.

As we came over the last dune to our lunch spot I b-lined it to the “sick tent” to check on Eric. Lying on his back, shesh wrapped around his head, mouth hanging open, flies all over his mouth, all I wanted to do was…take a picture. Ya know, to remind him how bad it was when he was better. What is wrong with me!?? I refrained. Here’s Leroy instead.

My friend Leroy

My friend Leroy

I woke him up batting the flies away. He staggered to his feet. “Watch out” he said as he stumbled past me into the desert. Delirious. In jeans. I ran after him offering to help. “I’m ok”, he muttered. Clearly this was a one man job. He disappeared over a dune.

Ten minutes went by.  We debated checking on him, and then I saw him. A broken man, shuffling back to camp, head down, holding his pant waist. “Are you ok babe?” I asked. “Didn’t make it” he whispered, as he curled into the fetal position.

He didn’t make it. Shat himself. In the desert. Wearing jeans. Buried his soiled boxers in the desert. He told me later, much later, when we could laugh about it. He feels bad for littering.

Luckily Kristy had some meds and he recovered within a few days. There was another incident involving a wooden crate in the bucket shower tent but Eric wasn’t the culprit that time. #blush

I’m telling you. It’s all fun and games until you shit your pants. Or the communal shower.




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