Amman to Remember
At breakfast we were greeted by quite a surprise. Dad was sporting a pair of the most disturbing poodle leg socks, which brought us considerable joy. Sadly, no photo. Once we were on the road we headed in the direction of Mount Nebo. This is the spot where Moses stood and saw the land promised to the Children of Israel.
As we walked up to the entry gate there was a dodgy Arab guy offering to be a guide. But before he can get his spiel in mum raises her hand and says “no thanks”. I think mum was a little taken a-back when he said in perfect English “Excuse me madam, but if you would let me finish before cutting me off it would be very much appreciated”. Hahaha. The view was fairly hazy, but we could definitely see Jericho off in the distance beyond the Jordan River.
When we left Nebo it was getting towards lunchtime, so Ali literally drove us all over the busy streets of Madaba in search of Falafel. This even included a quick but hairy trip the wrong way down a one way street. Eventually he found us a great place run by a group of the friendliest Syrian staff. They told us they left their country last year because of the extreme violence and difficulty finding any work. Aussies worry about a few thousand boat people and there are now over 2 million Syrian refugees. They served the falafels wrapped in Sharaak bread, which was almost like a fluffy Indian naan and they were delicious.
A couple of hours later we reached Amman. It was a little disconcerting to drive around the city without seeing another tourist. Eventually we spotted one at the old roman amphitheater just before we arrived at our hotel. On the way though Ali was a little lost, so he just started yelling out to people in the street for directions. We thought this was ridiculous until the next day when we realized taxi drivers do the same.
After checking into two separate two bedroom apartments, we headed up to the covered roof top lounge for a last memorial meeting together as we soaked up the evening life of Amman. For dinner we headed to a little oasis of a restaurant in a popular area of the city on Rainbow Street. The garden restaurant was great and then eating desert and coffee on the rooftop over looking the city lights was special stuff.
After ‘made to order’ omelets for breakfast back in the hotels roof top lounge we headed up to see the ruins of the old city, which are the highest spot in the middle of town. On the way up there a little local fella showed us a back entry, which we originally thought was just a short cut, until we had been on top for a few minutes and saw the entry gates. There weren’t many tourists around, but the locals were all so friendly. The ruins are from ancient Rabbah and could actually be where King David had Uriah (Bathsheba’s first husband) murdered by sending him out at the front of the army (2 Samuel 11).
Eventually we made our way back to the hotel to check out. From here we wandered the streets, where again we stood out like sore thumbs. We found some really nice fresh juice and stopped for lunch in a pretty hipster Arab restaurant, where people were enjoying food, music and lunchtime shisha’s. One minute we’d finished eating and the next mum and dad had to leave. It actually felt pretty sad being left there on our own again. We loved the couple of intense weeks we’d had together.
For the afternoon we killed time with a walk back up to Rainbow Street and headed back there a third time for dinner at a dodgy little burger joint. As late as we possibly could, we headed back to the hotel, grabbed our bags and caught a cab to the airport. Starbucks wifi helped us kill the few hours until our 3am flight.