We travelled through the desert, past wild flowers, palm groves, Lot’s wife and Mt Sodom, from the Red Sea to the Dead, with the Med still to come. A barefoot youth toting a machine gun wandered by.
We visited Masada, King Herod’s mountaintop fort.
We’re staying in Ein Gedi Kibbutz for a few days in a room which used to be a kibbutznik’s house. It has a view of Wadi Arugot on one side, and the Dead Sea, backed by Jordan’s mountains on the other.
Wadi Rum is a gorgeous pink sand desert, with weird rock formations, narrow canyons with ancient inscriptions, dunes and rock bridges.
We slept in a Bedouin tent, were served fragrant sage tea by locals wearing traditional dress who own camels, smelt frankincense and myrrh, and met a hedgehog.
Petra is Moses’ spring, and an ancient camel caravan trading city in the desert. On the way here were Bedouin tents, camels and olive groves.
Walking through a deep, narrow, winding gorge, we came upon this structure, carved into the rock.
The cardamom coffee and mint tea are divine!
We wandered the alleys, passing shops displaying dates, spices and scarves, then settled down for felafels and homous.
Our balcony affords a view of Amman’s sand coloured buildings, tumbling down the hill to the road of honking cars, blaring Arabic songs, and the call to prayer.
Devilishly dashing Mick is my mentor. He’s on his third gap year. He is also my accomplice in rut avoidance.
I gathered long service leave, leave without pay and all of my savings for a year of consumption without production. My goals are to tick off bucket list destinations, and to enjoy my small but trusty band of loved ones.
So far, I’ve caught up with friends and family, and witnessed my last baby entering the adult world of university.
I hope to follow this route first.
Later in the year, I might mop up my personal world map thus.
I’ve been looking forward to this year, and think a blog might be the way to communicate with loved ones.