Out of the dust and glare and heat and into a cool and softly-lit retreat where a pool of water reflects the distant sky: Even today the baolis of India, often part of a mosque complex, offer relief from a harsh climate as well as a safe supply of water.
The photograph, taken in 1909, was a find: It showed a music-recording session in Jiddah, years before scholars had thought Edison phonographs reached Arabia. The search was on for the wax cylinders themselves - and they turned out to be a find indeed.
American-born Jeyhan Mehmet Rohani spent his childhood among weavers in eastern Anatolia and began his formal education in the craft at the age of 10, Today he weaves Arabic calligraphy in his California studio, practicing prayer through art.
The malachite kingfishers were a surprise; so were the red-billed tropicbirds. Ornithologists doing field research in Yemen found those species and others as they identified "important bird areas" that deserve protection in new national parks.
Saudi Arabia's oil industry began 60 years ago with two signatures on a piece of paper; today, the country is the world's top oil producer. Saudi Aramco, founded just five years ago, inherited a proud can-do tradition, and is building on its legacy.