My journey or adventure has now been reduced to nothing more than
a two week vacation. I will be home in 14 days. After hitting my "travel
wall", then resting in Cairo, I made the 9 hour bus ride to Nuwiba,
Egypt where I had to wait for 8 hours to catch a 2 hour ferry. There is a mad dash at the visa office when leaving Egypt to get on the Ferry. There is no orderly line you jsut have to push yoru way up to the front holding out you money and passport hoping the person behing the desk grabs yours from the 15 that are being pushed in his face. I realized that while I was jostling for postition I was surrounded by the "Axis of Evil"! The passports I was competing with were Iraqi, Syrian, and Iranian. They all seemed like nice enough people, even if they were a little rude with all that pushing going on! But no reason to bomb them.
I was able to board the ferry without incident and then had to take a 2 hour
taxi ride to Wadi Musa to rest for the night.
In the morning, I rose
to try to catch sunrise at 7 am at Petra. I thought it would only
take me a few hours to see Petra and I would be back by lunch. But Petra requires a full day, if not a day and a half. It is probably
the most beautiful man made sight I've seen on this trip. It is a
city that is carved into the side of a slot canyon--think Mesa Verde
or Canyon De Chelly in the US but with much more sophisticated architecture.
The canyon alone is beautiful, and the buildings are stunning in design.
The only negative thing about the site is that the nomadic Bedouins
have inhabited these buildings for the past 3,000 years [eds
note/questions: those are some "nomads."] Unfortunately
they have not figured out indoor plumbing yet, so each building smells
of stale urine, which tempers the excitement of the site. But it is
a city, with hundreds of "buildings." I walked about 16
to 20 miles around the city, set in the beautiful canyon.
I highly recommend putting this on your list of things to see in your lifetime.
Jordanians are not Egyptian and are not Iraqi. It was an incredibly
safe place with all the creature comforts you would find in the southwest
US national parks. In fact, the Jordan dollar is stronger than the
US dollar, so this has been an expensive stop on the trip.
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