Crossing into Jordan

If you read my last post you will know that I recently spent some time in Israel but before coming back home we actually spent a few days in Jordan as well.  From Jerusalem we drove to the boarder to go through customs and then off we went to Mount Nebo.  Mount Nebo is where Moses viewed the promise land, since God had not permitted him to enter in due to his disobedience.  I LOVE this story even though at first it seems a little harsh for God not to let Moses enter into the promise land after a lengthy escape from Egypt and an even lengthier wandering in the desert.  But the first reason is because of God's tenderness towards Moses in his death.  God HIMSELF buried Moses.  The burial process is such an important process weaved into the human existence and what a tender act of service and love we see displayed in our God.  He loved Moses with such a fatherly love and he extends that same love to us.  The second reason is because no, Moses didn't enter the promise land, he entered eternity.  We know this because in Matthew 17 during the transfiguration, Moses is seen with Jesus.  How amazing is that?  Even in a moment of loss, God had something more in store for Moses, the loss was ultimately temporary.  What a special thing to hold on to!  You can read more about Moses on Mount Nebo in Deuteronomy 34. 

It was really hazy, windy, and dusty this day so we really couldn't see very far but on a clear day you can see, of course, Jerusalem!

After Mount Nebo we drove about three hours to our hotel outside of Petra.  During our few days here we spent a lot of time driving and let me tell you, you really get a sense of what it would have been like to wander around in the desert for 40 years because Jordan is just that, desert!  Before we checked into our hotel we went to the site where Moses struck the rock (reason why he couldn't enter the promise land, Numbers 20).  This was a really interesting site because the stream of water literally just flows through town next to modern day streets and shops but it was cool to get to see it!

Before leaving for this trip I read a lot of things about the people in Jordan being some of the kindest people and I can now attest to that!  Our first night there some of us went out at night and walked around a little bit.  Sand art is a really big thing there, where they create scenes with sand from Petra in bottles, it's amazing! Anyways, there were a lot of artists out working and they just invited us to come and watch them and they would explain to us their craft, it was just so cool to get to interact with these people.  Anywhere I went in Jordan I felt so welcomed!

The next morning we woke up and we made our way to Petra!  The first thing I was surprised to find out is that you can actually ride a horse or even a carriage down to the siq, which is the main entrance of Petra.  I wasn't going to take advantage of this at first but then one of my friends convinced me to do it and I am so glad I did!  I had never rode a horse before and I can't think of a better way to first experience it!

To enter into Petra you have to enter through a siq also known as a narrow gorge, which a little less than a mile.  It is really quite amazing that there is an entire city hidden at the end!

The whole history of Petra is pretty extensive so I will leave a link here for those of you who are interested in reading up on it!

The first official glimpse of Petra at the end of the siq is the Treasury.  This was such a breathtaking experience, I have never seen anything like it!

Before visiting Petra I had mostly seen pictures of the Treasury and the Monastery so I really had no idea how big this place actually is.  You really need at least a solid two days to see everything.

 Inside there are locals with donkeys, horses, and camels everywhere so we of course got a chance to ride them, which was so much fun!  My dad also dared me to kiss a camel and I took him up on it but I am really glad I went in for the kiss slowly because the camel was not happy about it and he warned me good and well before I got too close!  I loved seeing all of the local people do their thing inside Petra.  It was a really cool cultural experience.

I won't lie, it was a pretty crowded place but at one point I looked around and took in the crowds and the people riding camels this way and that way and I tried to imagine what it would've been like to live there thousands of years ago.  It really would have been something else!

After leaving Petra we went for lunch and the restaurant had such an amazing view but the most amazing thing is that Petra is located in those mountains in the distance.  Can you believe that such a huge city is hidden in there?!  I guess that is precisely the reason why it is famously known as the Lost City because to the untrained eye you could pass by here a thousand times and be none the wiser!

I can't wrap this trip up without introducing Masie the Mouse aka my guardian angel.  It was really hard for my to leave my girls to go on this trip.  I knew without a doubt they were in capable and loving hands with their dad but I just missed them so much!  When they and my husband dropped me off at the airport I cried like a baby!  So I decided to bring along Masie, their little mouse friend to keep me company.  She went everywhere with me every single day and it was such a lovely reminder of my girls.  It reminded me that they were perfectly loved and safe and that I could enjoy my trip in peace!  My daughter, Ezrah still talks about how her little mouse went to the Middle East.  I think a new travel tradition has begun!

So now that's my trip to the Middle East in a nutshell!  I had so much fun visiting these two countries.  I learned so much, met so many lovable people, and the memories will go with my fondly forever.  If you are thinking of visiting Israel or Jordan or both I could only recommend it to you about a thousand times and I really hope that someday, you do!

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