18 March 2012 20:00
I don't have Internet access here, so I am completing this now with the intention of publishing it at the first opportunity.
I woke up at 3:30
. Listened to the basketball game (too many easy baskets) and spoke with Melly and Caterina. I then napped, showered, packed, caught a taxi to the bus depot. As soon as I got out of the taxi someone screamed from across the street if I was going to Petra. I asked taxi or bus, he said bus and so I hopped in. The ride was very crowded (damnit Jessie, close your legs) and we were a little long in leaving, but it turned out fine. Petra weather today is a lot like New Mexico, chilly, sunny, and windy. I found my hotel, dropped off my luggage and headed to the ruins. The Siq you pass through on the way to the city of Petra is the most Baroque thing I have ever seen (and I've seen plenty of Bernini). The shapes as they tower above you are so curvy and organic. Dynamic is a good word too. Very beautiful. The treasury greets you at the end of the siq. It didn't blow me away how I thought it would. I obviously knew what it looked like already, plus coming through the beauty of the canyon did not put me in the most generous of minds to appreciate it. Further, as it was roped off, I see it more as a giant Hellenistic sculpture rather than a building. I was also surprised to see that the treasury is not the only building of that type in the immediate area-although it is the only completed and/or still standing one. The age of the treasury also didn't strongly impress upon me. Stone is unbelievably ancient anyway, so carving something out of stone even if it was 2000 years ago just doesn't impress the weight of time upon me the way a building made from scratch does. The rest of Petra is incredible. I love (LOVE) that you can wander among the ruins both Nabean (sp?) and Roman. I spent a lot of my time in Petra wandering and climbing among the Roman temple. The taste of getting to go where ever and take responsibility for what you see and do has me thinking a lot about freedom. What it means, the fact Americans don't have it, how used to not having it I am, how I feel when others do use it, etc I could probably do with out the people aggressively selling things. The very first person to come up to me in the siq was selling sets of a dozen or so postcards. I could see buying postcards, so I asked him how much and was told thirty (about 50USD). Do I look like a bitch? I told him he offended me and refused to look back at him. I believe he had fallen all the way to 2for 5 when he gave up. After Petra, I ate a wonderful Jordanean meal. Yummy lamb and rice and salty yogurt drink (in context, it really isn't that bad). The power has gone out three times since I've left Petra. The only thing on television in English is a CNN produced program about sport yachting. It seems sails no longer move. Tomorrow is more Petra and back to Israel.
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