|Turban and sunglasses cover my face, Jill hides under her veil, we duck police checkpoints. Most of the time we go through without questions. If they think we're foreigners we tell them we're from Singapore. That confuses them enough to let us go. Our guide calls these police "ignorant Bedouins." If they knew we were Americans they might detain us or send a platoon of soldiers to follow us for our protection. The drive through the Al Mahwit region, west of Sana'a, is beautiful. It's moist, mountainous country, not desert. We pass stone villages perched on seemingly inaccessible mountain peaks, overlooking springs, watercourses, terraced fields cut into valleys and hillsides. We visit three towns, Kawkabam, Thula, and Hababa.