Abu Dhabi Weather

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Amman and Jerash

Finding the hotel took a bit of work. Having forgone the expertise of a taxi driver the moment I decided to rent a car, I was on my own in finding my hotel. Luckily for me, my passenger did a good job of finding the area I wanted to go on my map of Amman. I was able to get close and find a place to park near a bus station. Since it was in the middle of the city and no one was parked there, I had a feeling that I didn't want to leave the car there for long. I was able to park and call the hotel to get directions. As it turned out, I was only about half a mile away so I walked to the hotel, checked in and has someone come with me to guide me to the hotel down the one-way streets. I was able to park my car right in front of the little family-run hotel because it wasn't the type of place where the guests show up with rental cars.

The older fellow that helped show me the driving directions asked if he could come to Jerash with me the next day and thinking that I could use a little local knowledge, said sure. It was nice to have the company, but as it turned out, he was Canadian originally from Iraq so didn't know the roads very well. This became apparent when he he wanted to stop literally every mile to ask directions. It was nice to have someone who could speak Arabic to ask directions, but I'm not exaggerating. Every mile. Even when I was pretty sure that the major road that someone had told us to take two minutes prior was going the right way, he had to stop and ask directions. And he refused to look at the map.

I forgave him once we arrived at the Roman ruins of Jerash. He was good company and I was impressed with how well he kept up with all the walking around I did, considering he was 70 years old. I was less impressed with his ability to take photos of me in front of  ruins without centering on me. After a while I would tell him no thanks when he offered to get a photo of me and would just do the self photos. I did enjoy his company, but on the ride back, once I got close to the hotel and his asking for directions wasn't working out (he would ask directions then mistakenly tell me to go the wrong way), I pulled over, got out the map and despite his protests, found the hotel while refusing to ask for directions.
A photo of me taken by my friend with some amazing stuff directly above and behind me and out of the frame of the picture.

How do you say in English? A rotunda.

Can you believe how historical this looks?

Pretty ominous with the clouds in the background, huh?

This must be some sort of theater.

The hippodrome where they used to race chariots.
That night I went out walking in the neighborhood shopping streets and smoked a shisha pipe near my hotel directly across the street from an old Roman theater. It was a nice way to spend my last night in Jordan. With the Eid al Fitr holiday going on, everyone was dressed up, out on the streets, and in a festive mood. It was a terrific atmosphere.

Relaxing at a cafe near the hotel with a Roman theater behind me.
The next day I packed up, checked out of the hotel, and made my way to a beach resort on the Dead Sea. I had planned on going to Mount Nebo where Moses saw the burning bush, but without my passenger to ask directions every mile, got lost. In getting lost, though, I saw some of the most incredible scenery and drove down the curviest mountain roads to the Dead Sea seaside.

Once there, I went in to the resort soaked in the salty water and alternated between the salty sea and the chlorine infused pools. I dug up some mud with some other people and spread this mud on myself like the others.I did this not for the softer skin that it was supposed to give me, but because how often do you really have an excuse to rub mud on yourself without everyone around you thinking you're crazy.

I thought I'd check out the spot where Jesus was baptized. Unfortunately, that was closed for the day so I just headed for the airport. I returned the rental car, gifting the person who cleans the car the sunglasses that I left in the drinks holder. Without further ado, so ended my wonderful trip to Jordan.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.