I realized I never quite gave you that post filled with pictures about my trip to Jordan. Quite remiss of me, as we saw and experienced so many wonderful things. So here, more than a month later, is Jordan: Saskia style. (Click on the images to enlarge them.)
But first, a shout out to our friends Dido and Joanne, for, first, having the courage to actually go on a 9-month-trip around the world, secondly, inviting us along for part of said trip, and thirdly, pretty much showing us around when we got there. It was awesome. Thank you.
This was the first thing we did: the Roman theater in Amman, just up the road from our hotel. It was quite nice, but rendered somewhat unimpressive by what we saw later:
the ruins at Jerash, for example. (The second picture is of the theater at Jerash. It includes authentically-dressed Jordanians playing the Scottish bagpipes to demonstrate the acoustics. Why they picked the bagpipes, I don’t know, but they’ve been doing it this way for years. Most tourists love it – myself included. B. thought it was cheesy, but I was secretly quite entertained when one American tourist started singing “Amazing Grace” and the bagpipes fell in to accompany him.)
and here, at Mt. Nebo. (Mt. Nebo is where Moses is said to have stood and looked out over the Promised Land he wasn’t allowed to enter. As I said before, people have been lighting candles here for 1500 years, and now I’m one of them.)
Much more mosaics than you’d know what to do with. I have about a thousand pictures of mosaics (which, turns out, don’t photograph that well).
A guy named Sammy living on a cliff. He’d built himself a little house and made his living by offering tourists a place to stay for the night. He was eccentric, enthusiastic, and had two turtles and a dog (who had just had puppies. I elected to have my picture taken with the turtles, as I’m not really a dog person at heart). Also fun, his bathroom didn’t really have a door (only a curtain-type closing) and it overlooked the valley. It was quite a gorgeous view and I can imagine he spent more time in there than was strictly speaking necessary.
And Petra, beautiful, ancient, humongous (as Dido likes to say) Petra. We were absolutely right in coming to Jordan in the low season – it meant that we could enjoy the many sights of Petra without having to scramble around the, what, millions of tourists that are there otherwise. Also, it meant that the heat was manageable. I would not want to be there in 40℃ weather. When that sun beats down, it gets hot.
One of the highlights was hiking in the desert. More sand than I’d ever seen in my life and absolutely beautiful. But also hot (surprising, right?). Until the sun went down, and it got chillier, and dark, quite quickly. Really a magical experience.
In the category “awesome”: riding a camel. Mine was named Godan.
And even though B. doesn’t like having his picture taken, much less posted on the web, I’m going to end with this photo of us together. It was our first vacation together and it was fantastic. I’m looking forward to taking many such trips in the future.