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Monday, October 06, 2008

Petra and Back

I just got back from a 3 day trip that went to Jerash, Petra, Karak, Mount Nebo and Madaba.

Since I can’t properly upload my photos, here’s some great Flickr pics of where I went.

Jerash is an interesting Hellenistic-Roman ruined city located 80 miles north of Amman. The impressive, beautifully preserved ruins of Jerash include buildings from Byzantine and early Muslim periods as well as classical structures, and the entire setting is quite lovely.

View of the royal tombs.

Petra’s most famous view. This is the first point where you sight the treasury.

The Monastery is at the top of 900 stairs, which takes a fit person on a cool day about 1 hour and another 15 minutes to get up to the Bedoin view points. I, mostly fit in 35 C, made it up in 1.5 hours with lots of rest breaks. By stairs, I really mean goat path, and you have to be very careful of the raging donkeys. The Bedoin guys at the view point are fantastic. And they take visa and text message from their caves. The visa is true, which means text messaging from a cave could also be true, but I know that they have been relocated to a village that no one really likes (bit like aboriginal reserves in Canada).

Al-Karak, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, crusader castle.

Madaba: This 6th century mosaic map of Jerusalem was found under the floor of Madaba’s St George’s Church. The mosaic was probably made during the reign of the Emperor Justinian (AD 527-65) and hold significant historical value. This is a small section of the mosaic and is the first known map of Jerusalem (where I’m going tomorrow at 7:30 am). We are taking a taxi to the end of the bridge, then going in a shuttle over the bridge and through immigration and hopefully catching a taxi on the other side. God willing all will go well.

Mount Nebo (Alex, if you read this, show Dan this picture of the cross. I want to know what he thinks about the serpent.)
The serpentine cross sculpture (the Brazen Serpent Monument) atop Mount Nebo. The sculpture was created by Italian artist, Giovanni Fantoni, and is symbolic of the bronze serpent created by Moses in the wilderness (Numbers 21:4-9) and the cross upon which Jesus was crucified (John 3:14). But I bet Dan has interesting things to say about the abandonment of ego.

Please send me messages. My mom is fun but I’m missing conversation with people my own age. The girls aren’t chatty and the boys are interested in whether I’m married.

Tell them you’re married and your husband will find them if they’re not careful.

Any good offers of marriage…? smile

I did mention that I was married but without the boy right in front of you, and no ring, there’s not much you can say. Many people are sending me birthday wishes apparently. I’m not sure about the fascination with my age but it’s all charming.

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