Michael de Percy

madepercy

Michael de Percy

Dr Michael de Percy is Senior Lecturer in Political Science at the University of Canberra, Academic Fellow of the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, a chartered member of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and a graduate of the Royal Military College, Duntroon.

Michael blogs at: http://www.politicalscience.com.au



Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok January 22nd 2010

We had an eleven hour stop-over in Bangkok and took advantage of a government stop-over tour of the Grand Palace.... read more
Grand Palace
Grand Palace
Grand Palace

Middle East » Israel » Jerusalem District » Jerusalem January 14th 2010

Spent a few days in Jerusalem at the New Swedish Hostel in the Old City.... read more
Dome of the Rock
Church of the Holy Sepulchre
David's Harp

Middle East » Jordan » North » Jerash January 12th 2010

Originally built by Saladin circa 1184 AD to contain the growth of the Latin Kingdom in the north of the Jordan Valley, Qalat (Castle) Ajloun was later captured by the Mongols, the Mamluks and finally the Ottomans.... read more
Jordan Photos 047
Jordan Photos 002
Jordan Photos 003

Middle East » Jordan » West » Dead Sea January 11th 2010

The Baptism Site, Jordan River I will have to write this one up later, but we drove from Amman in a borrowed car to the Baptism Site, just to the north of the Dead Sea.... read more
Jordan Photos 064
Jordan Photos 038
Jordan Photos 042

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba December 7th 2009

We will soon start the PADI Advanced Open Water Course at Aqaba Adventure Divers (AAD). Last night, we were treated to a traditional Bedouin dinner. All the mattresses, pillows and camel saddles were laid out near the pool with a large table containing the fire placed in the middle of the square of mattresses. Only the men sit around the fire, with the women sitting at the tables and chairs about 10 metres away. The meal was swordfish with rice and pine nuts - it was absolutely brilliant! But we had eaten a similar dish with lamb with the AAD crew earlier that afternoon! The food is served in large platters (like mensaf) and everyone sits or kneels around the platter (which is placed on a low table). The freaky thing is that everyone eats with ... read more
The Tank & the Seven Sisters
The Tank & the Seven Sisters
The Tank & the Seven Sisters

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba November 27th 2009

PADI Open Water Diver Course 27 Nov 09:We left the apartment the day before Eid started - a hard time to find somewhere to stay! When we asked about accommodation at Aqaba Adventure Divers, everything was fully booked. I asked about camping (many people were camping on the beach nearby) and we were welcome to stay on the rooftop or pitch a tent on the sandy volleyball court out the back of the centre. We opted for the rooftop and went to Safeway in Aqaba to purchase a few things such as sleeping bags, tent, camping mattresses, camelbaks etc before moving to the dive centre. That first evening, we started on the course manuals and the video for the open water course. We went hard core on the academic stuff, getting through 3/5 of the material ... read more
Michael on the Roof
PADI Open Water Course
PADI Open Water Course

Middle East » Jordan » North » Jerash November 18th 2009

Overnight at the Olive Grove We left Aqaba on Wednesday afternoon, heading to a friend's parents' farm house near Jerash, an ancient city which was once part of the Roman Decapolis. Look in my older posts to see some photos of the ruins there. We drove from Aqaba to Amman and the sky was amazing. We took the King's Highway through the desert. We organised a room at a friend's hotel, the url=http://www.travelnow.com/hotel/propertydetails/210842/;jsessionid=C1E00FBD960952C1E18F4FBFB9A5A868.tn01tc01?currencyCode=USD&cid=54073 Dove Hotel in Amman. It was a quaint old place with lots of character, and an Irish Pub which had a great feel to it. It is only a two-star hotel, but the bed was comfortable and we were looked after very well. I had a meeting at Princess Sumaya University for Technology, and then we recommenced the road tri... read more
Cola Wars I
Cola Wars II
The Dead Sea

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba November 17th 2009

This is a bit of an enthnographic approach (not sure how I feel about this sort of stuff), but anyway it's an attempt to explain the little things. The Camel Trek - for next time :( I organised a camel trek through Gordon Williams, a Scotsman who consults to the local Bedouin tribe from the area at St Katherines Monastery near Mt Sinai. The camel school was a European Union initiative so it is all above board - but it will only be the two of us with a Bedouin guide/teacher in the desert. You can see the details here for the Camel School. Later note - we went diving and the camel trek didn't happen... Cooking I have started a recipe blog to actually document some of the simple recipes I have stored in my ... read more

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba November 16th 2009

First visit just before closing time... We arrived at Qal'at el 'Aqaba 5 minutes before closing time, so we didn't have long to see the sites. The Aqaba Museum next door was also closing, and rather than pay the JOD 1 fee each, we decided to come back another day. Anyway, we had a chance to take a few photographs and to look around the area. The following information was provided on a noticeboard at the castle. All grammatical and typographical errors are in the original: UNIVERSITY OF GENT (BELGIUM) UNIVERSITY OF LYON (FRANCE) DEPARTMENT OF ANTIQUITIES OF JORDAN In collaboration with ANDREWS UNIVERSITY (USA) UNIVERSITY OF COPENHAGEN (DENMARK) AQABA CASTLE PROJECT Prof. Dr. J. De Meulemeester Director of the archaeological excavations (2000-2008) The Aqaba Castle Project. New excavation facts It was probably not until the ... read more
Qalat al Aqaba
Qalat al Aqaba
Qalat al Aqaba

Middle East » Jordan » South November 15th 2009

Archeological Ruins in the Centre of Aqaba After going to the gym this morning, I ventured across the road to walk among the ruins of the historical city of Ayla. The place was basically deserted when I entered, except for two local men, but other toursists soon followed me into the site. The ruins were found in an archeological dig sponsored by the Jordanian, the University of Chicago, and the American Centre for Oriental Research in Amman. Rather than ramble on, I have typed out the text from the signs located around the site. While the introductory sign suggests that the signs are numbered, I only found one numbered sign and another sign had been completely removed from the post. The text below is as written on the signs; the grammatical errors are not mine. Text ... read more
Ayla Ruins
Tower foundations
Ayla Ruins




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