From there we went to the Dead Sea. By this point I was suffering from a killer sunburn from the day before. I can’t believe I forgot to pack sunscreen. Especially since I am rather obsessive/compulsive about it back home. I found some British ladies to follow while I was there and just pretended to be with them (which is hard to do when you don’t want them to notice at the same time). This was the only point that I wish I had had someone with me. One of the cool things about the Dead Sea is that you really float on the top of the water. It has about 10 times the salt content of other seawater. Bobbing around alone got old pretty fast. And then there was the whole mud thing. The claim of Dead Sea mud is that full of nutrients and has various therapeutic benefits. I had to have the guy selling the mud put in on my back for me since I obviously couldn’t do it myself. People at work had a bit of a laugh at this but whatever, I will never see the guy again and I am sure he wasn’t too put out by doing this for me. So in the end I didn’t spend much time at the beach.
On my last day, Jamil picked me up and we headed north to Jarash. More napping and checking out castle ruins along the way. Jarash is known for its Roman ruins. The highlight of this place were all the kids (yes, kids). Jamil had packed me a lunch but it was too heavy so upon entering the site I found some shade and started to eat so I could carry my bag. Dozens of school groups were constantly passing by. They were all boys, not sure why girls can’t go on field trips but that’s another topic. Many would wander over and ask me where I was from and then carry on. One particular boy hung out for while. He noticed my camera and wanted to see it. I asked if I could take his picture. In an instant I was swarmed by boys. It was pretty cute. Their poor teacher had no control over them. He eventually rounded them up and chased them down the path. I decided to wait until they were far away before heading out myself. About 5 minutes later, the original boy returned. I started to tell him he was going to get in trouble when he handed me a little blue and silver ring for my finger. “For you” was all he said then he smiled and ran away. I bumped into them about an hour later. I feel bad saying this now but when I saw them, I hid. I found a rock to sit on and took a break while I waited for them to move on. Well he found me anyways but this time he had a fresh cup of hot tea for me. So cute! I felt like a bag for trying to evade them. We chatted for a few minutes…his name was Hamish. He even asked for my email address…so funny! Long story short, I ran into them once again as they were leaving. Hamish grabbed my arm and asked his teacher to take a picture of the two of us. He made my day.
Overall, I found the people in Jordan to be so friendly. I went to the Citadel early one morning and was the only tourist there for awhile. I could feel the tourist police watching me as I wandered around. It kind of annoyed me until one of them came out to the hill I was on and offered me a cup of coffee. I always tend to be a little cautious when people offer me things and wonder what they really want (money?) but he just chatted with me for a few minutes and walked away. I missed so many great photo opportunities too…. such as a boy galloping down the paved street on his donkey in front of a fast food restaurant, or the shepherds and their flock waiting on the side of the 3 lane road to cross the road-within the city…camels and their babies on the side of the road. Amman was a mix of traditional and modern living (see camel riding down highway in back of pickup truck). I loved it.