At first I was afraid, I was PETRA-fied

I know, I am a dork, but you have to admit, it is a little bit funny!! This past Sunday, as part of my Eilat vacation adventure i headed out to Petra, Jordan for a day of discovery and breathtaking beauty. We began the day at 6:30 as we groggily piled into our open backed Jeep and headed to the Jordanian border. About 15 minutes later we were on our way by foot crossing the border. It was exciting and strange all at once. Every time I am in Israel, and I drive south, I look out and see Jordan, a country so close, but so out of my reach, and now, there I was, walking across the border, my own two feet carrying me across a small strip of land which brought me to that country so far away. we arrived, made our way through customs, met our tour guide who promptly began with a Joke: Hey Eve, Where is Adam?! UGH, enough with that, I’ll blog about that line later. Anyways, we all hurried to our bus for the day and headed off to our first stop, the port city of Aqaba. While there, we saw the Jordanian flag, the size of an olympic sized swimming pool. we took in the flag and looked back across the border at Israel. There I was on the other side, looking back at Israel, it was a surreal but exciting experience. We then boarded back on the bus, and headed our way to Petra, about a 2 hour drive.

We arrived in Petra, as it started to rain.. ON our way, we passed through mountains as we climbed up to the sight. We saw snow, intense rainfall and then, the beauty and breathtaking wonder of the cenery. We arrived in Petra and saw the colors mixing, the unset and sunrise of the magnificent red rock. The intricate details used to carve into the rocks and create the treasury, the monastery, the tombs. o much history, so many sacred places for so many people so long ago. And unlike some of the sight i have seen in Israel, there are still people living in Petra, the bedouin community supports itself. Camels, donkeys, horses roam throughout the path to the treasury and beyond, the animals are fee, the birds have their home. breathing in the fresh, clean air of the ancient city, walking on thousands of years of History, i found myself at home, taking the the mystery, the sacredness of this fantastical place. It is one of the new 7 wonders of the world.

We hike,d untilt he end and then up a million stairs or so it seemed to the top of the monastery. And while the hike was hard, it was completely worth iti in the end. We arrived at the top, after winding our way thought the various twists and turns of the mountain and there it was in its simplistic breathtaking beauty. the air was clear, the sky a pristine blue, and the views, spectacular. THere we rested, took it in, made our peace, and settled on the way back down. The ipod came out, the music blasting and a sing along ensued. What a better way to pass the time than singing good oldies like New Kids on the Block while hiking in Petra? The perfect end.

We found our way to the bottom, ate a fresh lunch of falafel and hummus, and then hiked the hour and some back through the treasury on to the via sacra until we reached the visitors center and our bus. Words cannot describe the beauty of the sunset over the mountains into the valley as we winded our way back down through the mountains. A day of breathtaking, beauty, history amazes me, well worth it. When we reached the border crossing, a strange sense of familiarity and peaceful ness came over me. As safe as I felt in Jordan, it was good to be home, to walk across the border into the land of my ancestors, to my home.

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