Dune Bashing

Brendan May Issue: Section:

“Chaos followed by serenity”

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Saudi Border

“HAVE YOU EVER FLIPPED ONE OF THESE?” I scream to our driver over the roar of the engine.

“ONLY FIVE TIMES SIR”, he replies casually. This exchange is Doha. This exchange is Dune Bashing. Chaos followed by serenity.

Doha, Qatar is small nation located on a peninsula in the Arabian Sea in the Gulf Region of the Middle East. Dune Bashing is its premier action-adventure sport. The goal is simple yet thrilling: Drive your SUV as fast and as hard as possible through the desert dunes.
The trip began with a pickup at our hotel and was followed by an hour long drive through Doha to the edge of the desert. Our driver stopped to let the air out of the tires to grab more traction on the burning desert sand. From there we began the bashing.
The Driver was quick to inform that in case of a flip we should fold our arms across the chest in order to save instant amputation.
“Practical”, I thought to myself.
Quickly we begin scaling and plunging down dunes. Skimming across the crests and bordering on complete vehicle roll. Needless to say my arms stayed glued to my chest. The adrenalin fueled ride eventually led to the shores of a beautiful beach sequestered away by enormous dunes. When asked just exactly where we were the driver again very casually informed us: “Saudi Border”
Basking in the desert sunset the serenity finally hit. Ancient, yet incredibly modern. Conservative, yet progressively forward thinking. Chaotic yet peacefully serene. Doha and its dune bashing are both magically paradoxical.

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