Another truly remarkable piece of history but sadly being consumed rapidly by the ever growing commercial expansion that human kind has become avaricious to.
Every time I see an IKEA or the likes of these big Malls and retailers in the pipeline in any city, my heart drops – I say to myself – Not this crap again. This is a classic way to kill tradition, to kill beauty , to kill individuality and develop this Robotic, insipid gigantic mass of concrete we call Malls filled with so much of material crap that gives rise to this disease called Consumerism where we are inflicted with this OCD to buy more crap that we don’t need just because it is available and is cheap.
Anyway – I digress..
Jordan is beautiful at least when you pass the Retail giants that were under construction. Must be fully operational by now – Driving through the old town, small cobbled streets, houses on the mountains – wonder how they built some houses at that height, small winding roads and breathtaking natural beauty. The old town and center was the place I fell in love with. Still thankfully retaining its original beauty. Small shops and cafes lining either side of the tiny cobble streets.
The second day we drove to the famous Dead Sea. I don’t swim, I have aquaphobia – so I decided to stand by and watch my family and friends take a dip in the dead sea. I was being persuaded, cajoled and heckled to join them for a swim. They assured me that no one could drown there as it had a high salt content and I would simply float.
On hindsight, I was quite moronic to listen to them. I gathered up all my courage and stepped gingerly on to the side of the sea. I could still feel the ground under my feet so I was ok. Then the unthinkable happened. I was pushed in further and then I started to struggle. I had floated quite far in, don’t know how and I just went down like a metal ball (dumb belle). Before I passed out I remember my eyes, my ears and my mouth & my throat stinging as if acid had been poured. The taste of the water was excruciating. It was like I had ingested a bucket of salt in one sip.
The next thing I remember was the guard pouring mineral water all over my face and forcing me to drink as much water as I could. So for all the non-swimmers – My friends., if anyone tells you that you cant drown in the dead sea and will automatically float – it is total BS. Don’t believe it. Probably a lifeless body would float but not a live one unless you know how to swim heh.
Somewhere along the way back we went to the place where Jesus Christ was Baptized. This also happened to be a border with Israel. The place was so serene and quiet and peaceful. It is called the AL – Maghtas ruins on the Jordanian side of the Jordan river. It is a UNESCO world heritage site now.
I was surprised that the place was empty, not many people around but nevertheless a piece of history to be cherished. The next day we attended an engagement party of a friend’s relative which was held at a gorgeous house on the mountains overlooking the entire city of Amman. One of those old money mansions. The garden decked with Stone statues and fountains and trees and immaculately manicured grass lawns. Large Stone steps going down to a sort of a viewing patio from where one could see the city lights shimmering in gold and white. Across the mountains in front one could see tiny faint golden lights from the houses blinking intermittently scattered like little gold beads.
Another lovely place to visit, struck off my bucket list ! I cherished every moment, even the unconscious part where I almost drowned with fear!
By the way, the dead sea products are really amazing. The skin care, the face and body masks, etc. it’s worth a try. So, if you feel like it, do visit the place. It is beautiful, the people are very friendly and warm and you get to see a part of the place of the biblical origin – in other words – where Jesus was baptized.
Jordan is a country that still retains its culture and tradition & its old world charm and hopefully doesn’t get sucked in by the capitalist expansion too fast.