Bearing Witness


I am now in Amman, after traveling through Wadi Rum and Petra. Wadi Rum was spectacular, I spent the night in a Bedouin camp after doing a four wheel drive tour of the main sites including Lawrence house, the superb red sand dunes on the slopes of Jebel Umm Ulaydiyya and several rock bridges. Petra was truly aware inspiring. You enter through the  Siq, which is not a canyon but rather one block that has been ripped apart by tectonic force. Just as you start to think there’s no end to the Siq, you catch a breath taking view of the Al-Khazneh [the Treasury] which like all of Petra is carved out of the sandstone. From there I walk down the Streets of Facades, past the theatre and the Royal Tombs. Then I headed, to what I found the most impressive feature of Petra, Al-Deir[the Monastery] which is accessed by hiking up long rock-cut staircase – well worth the effort. I also hiked up to the High Place of Sacrifice which provides stunning view of the site and surrounding desert. Amazing ! however I was brought back to earth each night by the horrific footage streaming out of the Gaza Strip, devastating ! In Amman I took things a little slower I had several good meals with nice wine and checkout both art galleries, as well as seeing the Citadel and Roman Theater. The art galleries where the highlight, the Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts had a great modern exibition called “Together” and the Darat-al-Funun had a moving installation about Al-Nakba. I would like to leave leave you with one of the quotes from the installation that demonstrates the connection Palestinians have with there homeland “I never went back to my village, ever. I am afraid that I might lose my sight especially now that it is becoming weaker and I can barley see what is in front of me. I wish I could go back even if I could not see it with my own eyes. I could still feel it and would see it with my heart and mind”.

My first view of the Treasury from the siq

My first view of the Treasury from the siq

The Monestry

The Monestry

Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum

January 11, 2009 - Posted by | My Travels | , , ,

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