Roman Ruins in the Middle East

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May 7th 2013
Published: May 7th 2013
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We left Madaba to Amman where we would spend our last two nights in Jordan. The journey is coming to a close. We made one stop just out of Madaba at Mt. Nebo. The place where Moses apparently first laid eyes on the promised land before dying. There isn't much to "see" there. Some mosaics and a viewpoint looking over Israel, but it was neat to be in such a significant biblical place. (I suppose the entire area is significant in a biblical sense, but for some reason Mt. Nebo was the most inspiring). The sky was a bit hazy so we couldn't see very far, but we could see the Dead Sea a little ways beyond. We didn't stay here long, and spent a good portion of the day driving to Amman. Amman has the craziest modern looking bridge over the river. I was surprised to see something so abstract and shiny in a land that's so dusty and historic. Apparently Amman is a very rich city and an expensive place to live. This is where the money lives in Jordan.

Our last day in Jordan we had the option to go to Jerash or have a free day in Amman. I chose to go to Jerash. Our guide lives in Jerash and seemed to know everyone as we wandered about the Roman ruins. This was an interesting place for me because he was so relaxed and so at home here. It was like seeing a new side of him. We had two guides on this trip, and this one had only been with us for five days. I felt like we were just getting to know him and then we were leaving.

The weather had been sunny and nice when we left Amman so I didn't take a jacket. Of course the one time I leave it behind the weather takes a turn and becomes rainy and cold. I should know better. So I shivered as we wandered the site, but I wouldn't have missed a second of it. Its actually a fairly large area, and it hasn't been completely excavated. I've seen other Roman ruins, and didn't expect to be so interested here, but really I could have stayed and explored longer. Maybe it was just the atmosphere and the attitude of our guide, or maybe it was just knowing we were at the end of our journey, but I enjoyed Jerash very much.

The city itself we didn't see. We just went to the ruins, and then went back to Amman where we had our farewell supper and stayed out far too late into the night. My mom and I and two others needed to be at the airport at 3 am for our flight to London, so I was going to just stay awake. However, at close to 1 am, I needed to sleep....even if it was only a nap. Why is it necessary for airlines to fly at such ridiculously early morning hours? At 2:30 I was up again, and our taxi was thankfully on time! We made it to the airport with no mishaps. The airport in Amman is very new so it is very shiny and modern and rivals much larger cities in its style. Unfortunately, there is no "comfy" seating or places to stretch out so tired travellers just have to suck it up in the regular chairs with arms.

Our flight to London was without incident. I couldn't stay awake and slept most of the way. Our travelling companions continued on to Canada directly from London, so my mom and I said good bye to them at Heathrow before we passed through customs into the UK.

Good-bye Egypt! Good-bye Jordan! Even though it was a tour, it was still an adventure and I will have many exciting experiences to remember fondly in my old age when I am too stiff to move from my rocking chair.

As for those who are debating whether or not to travel in the area, I say GO! There are ups and downs, chaos and calm, but every second is amazing!


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