02 March, 2010


The above photo was taken by Erwin Escher at the 2005 Middle East Championships, in Amman, Jordan, held on the grounds of The Royal Stables. The Ansata Sinan son, Shamekh Al Shaqab, out of the Ansata Halim Shah daughter, Malaka, was named Senior Male Champion at this show and was also named Grand Champion. StraightEgyptians.com has a very nice feature, with many more photos taken by Erwin Escher.

Shamekh Al Shaqab died. He was 12 years old. A celebrated and much admired straight Egyptian Arabian stallion, his tail female line traced back to the mare, Moniet el Nefous, through the Alaa el Din daughter, Mahiba. Yassmin Atieh emailed me earlier today, with the very sad news. I was really touched by the words that Yassmin wrote to me. She expressed the sadness in losing a horse like Shamekh, far too early:

"He was a king by all means and he was a kid also by all means. He was strong and he was hope for every one and will always be. He passed away today, the 2nd of march and until the end, he was fighting. He was at his home, the Royal Jordanian stables. He went there as a colt, lived happy and was loved by every one and he in turn, loved every one there. He was a stallion, a man who shakes many hearts with his blows, moves and adorable eyes. He left a lot of progeny unmistakably like him, with the same look in the eyes, forever to last in our hearts. Shamekh was not just a horse, he was hope."

Princess Alia Al Hussein Al Saleh is a great champion of the Arabian Horse and a great humanitarian. Always, you will find her supporting life in all forms and specifically for the fair and ethical treatment of all animals. I admire her very much, for all that she does. She makes the world a better place for all forms of life.

She is my all-time


and I wish I could be more like her. She is a faithful woman and in tragic times like these, a great example for me to follow, in loving God and praising Him for the good and for the bad. I think it is impossible to be just like Alia, as she is unique, a special person, maybe a once-in-a-lifetime person. I always hear about angels being sent to earth and maybe, well for me, Alia is just that, an angel, who inspires and encourages other people to be like angels, like Yassmin.

This is for you, Alia, in lieu of the hug that I would prefer to give you in person.

We will miss Shamekh,

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