Blogs from North, Jordan, Middle East

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Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman July 18th 2020

Today is about nothing, much like "Seinfeld" which was a show about nothing, according to George Costanza and Jerry. How did google get its name? The world's top search engine takes its name from the mathematical expression of 100 zeros trailing after the number 1. This name is especially apt since binary code, which is used for all computer processors, uses ones and zeros. Google’s goal was to rank pages on the World Wide Web according to importance using Google metrics, with the ultimate mission being “To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Who knows if Google would have caught on if its founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, had stuck with its original name: Backrub. How many bones in the human ear? There are three small bones in the human ... read more
Show about nothing
Coca cola secrets

Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman April 4th 2020

31 mars (Toujours au Marriott Petra, Chambre 811) 10h00Am. Debout devant ma fenêtre, je tire une gorgée de mon éternel Earl Grey en observant des chèvres brouter de la brindille dans les collines inertes et recourbées de Petra. Dès que mon regard s'attarde sur quelques mouvements à l'extérieur de ma capsule, je souris, prenant soudainement conscience que le paysage à l'extérieur de la chambre 811 n'est pas qu'un simple décor photographique fixé dans le temps. Le téléphone de ma chambre sonne soudainement, me sortant d'un coup de mon ennuyante routine de prisonnier. Il n'est pourtant pas l'heure du lunch. Au bout de la ligne, l'ambassade canadienne m'annonce de bonnes nouvelles: une entente entre le Qatar et la Jordanie permet le décollage d'un avion le 2 avril à 1h15AM, à partir de l'aéroport international d'Amman (Queen Allia), ... read more
Isolement au Dove Hotel
Repas à 20$cad, Dove Hotel
Aéroport en quarantaine 1

Middle East » Jordan » North March 13th 2020

I've been home from Jordan a week and I'm finally posting this last Blog Post. Before I get on with what I did my last day in Jordan, I want to comment on the Coronavirus Panic. Our GAdventures travel group had to scramble to get flights home. My lesson in this was to use a travel agent instead of booking my own flight. That way the travel agent does the rebooking instead of me unsuccessfully trying for 3 hours to rebook a United Airlines flight. I tried the website, and they don't have agents in Jordan so the pulldown tab for Middle East does not include Jordan. I tried 3 different phone numbers but they kept sending me back to the 800 phone number which had greater than 1 hour wait. I ended up booking a ... read more
Mosque of King Abdullah bin Al Hussein
Mosque of King Abdullah bin Al Hussein
Mosque of King Abdullah bin Al Hussein

Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman March 12th 2020

Now that we can't go to Israel, we were all in panic mode trying to get flights home. Damien, Jacinta, & Natalie (Australian) were going to go to Greece, but found out they were shutting down sightseeing to the sites, so they booked a flight home.By lunch today all of us had booked flights home. I got messages from friends that Trump banned flights from Europe and my new flight goes through Frankfurt, so I was wondering what to do. Another friend said it was about European people not being let into U.S., not U.S. citizens. It's been stressful enough because I tried to rebook with United Airlines (according to their website I could rebook and they wouldn't charge rebooking fees), but I couldn't get through on the 800 phone line (which is the only way ... read more
Aws & me acting silly
Numeira place
Numeira place

Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman March 11th 2020

10 mars Austrian Airlines. Déchaussé, je m'étire dans l'astronef en me déroulant de toute ma longueur sur les bancs vacants à mes côtés. Je m'élance vers mon escale en Autriche dans un avion rarement vu aussi vidé de ses voyageurs. Leur absence est presqu'inquiétante. Nous sommes qu'une soixantaine de passagers sur une possibilité de 210 en direction de Vienne. Pour une traversée de l'Atlantique, il va sans dire que j'aurai droit à davantage de verres de vin et de verres d'eau qu'à l'habitude. ''Jamais vu aussi tranquille'' que m'a avoué la cravate du comptoir à l'aéroport de Montréal. ''Ils ont cancellé le vol de demain. La peur du coronavirus aura réussit à vider nos avions. Espérons que vous pourrez revenir'' avait-il alors ajouté à la mi blague en tirant son sourire lacté jusqu'à éclater de rire ... read more
Amphithéâtre Romain 2
Ombrage
Amphithéâtre Romain 1

Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman March 6th 2020

Last night we had our farewell dinner. Hard to believe the Egypt part of the tour is over. Khaled asked us to talk about what we liked about the tour and suggestions. I really appreciated how passionate Khaled is about his country, and he would discuss anything with us, not just sightseeing things. I appreciated his attention to detail to constantly be calling bus driver, the boat, the felucca, our train tickets, our flight tickets, showing us where to get money, taught us how to haggle in the market, where to buy water. He was always there to help us. I came for the Pyramids and Sphinx, and got alot more. My only suggestion was a handout with a list of the Gods that he talked about because I got confused even though I read about ... read more
Farewell Dinner
Hotel in Luxor
20200306_072727

Middle East » Jordan » North » Jerash March 1st 2020

Following hot in the footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia a chance go to Jordan was too good to turn down. We were enticed, as Lawrence was, by cheap flights with Ryanair from Paphos in Cyprus; £20 return for four nights, a hop of less than an hour. So, after six splendid days chilling on the beach in all-inclusive luxury we headed off on a little adventure. We landed in Amman and were whisked down south to Wadi Rum and Petra for the first few nights. If you click on the links there, you can read my accounts of those superb experiences. Jordan was so ‘full on’ I decided to keep the blogs separate or else this would have gone on too long. I’m picking up the journey here after our visits to the two mentioned above. ... read more
An actor in Gerasa Theatre
Mud bath...
Temple of Aphrodite

Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman January 16th 2020

Following a buffet breakfast and checking in luggage (for the bus driver), we boarded the bus for a trip to Mt. Nebo. This is where Moses viewed the promised land since he wasn't permitted to enter. It is believed he died on Mt. Nebo or nearby, though the exact place is not known. I was warned it would be cooler and windy on Mt. Nebo, but I wasn't prepared for the intensity of the wind. It felt like you were being blown over the hillside as you walked toward the sites. I will post a short video on my Facebook page for you to see just what I mean. As you walk up the hill there is a large stone like the one place over Jesus' tomb and a statue of Moses to commemorate his life ... read more
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Middle East » Jordan » North » Amman January 13th 2020

So as always for any trip I make a list of last-minute things I have to do...buy extra batteries, get snacks, make sure my family has what they need while I’m away, etc. Terry drove me to New Martinsville, was helping me out, and would also take my car home once I linked up with the rest of the group. While waiting at the plaza we learned Randy, Diane, and Debbie were in a fender bender at McDonald’s. It caused a lot of excitement and delayed our departure to Pittsburgh. Once they arrived, we loaded up and had an uneventful trip to the airport. We were later than we planned but we had plenty of time. Debbie and I were the first the check in with our bags. I dug through my purse...no passport. I dug ... read more
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Middle East » Jordan » North » Jerash June 29th 2019

Today we have arranged to visit the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Jerash, which is about 50 kilometres north of Amman. Our driver’s name is Haitham. He tells us that as recently as the 1980s Amman was a relatively small city, but it has experienced enormous growth in recent decades. We ask whether a lot of this is due to the influx of refugees. He says that some of it is, particularly Iraqis, and more recently Syrians, many of whom are currently living in two large refugee camps near the border. He says that it has recently become a lot safer in Syria and a lot of the refugees are now returning home. I think that the standard applying to the word “safer” might be a bit different here to that back in Australia. ... read more
The Cardo Maximus, Jerash
Temple of Artemis, Jerash
Arch of Hadrian, Jerash




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