Saturday, October 16, 2010

Holy Land Tour Day 12

Israel back to Jordan

The children of Israel grumbled to Moses in this desert -
can hardly blame them!

Our last day in Israel was mostly spent in the morning on the bus with regular stopovers at Kibbutz or 'Chapel of the Restrooms' as they have become known on our way south to the border crossing.  Our driver Saaed is the first Christian we have had as either a guide or driver. He comes from a little town between Nazareth and Cana. He is proud to show us pictures on his phone of his beautiful wife, Rosanne, and their 7 month old daughter Leen.

Saaed our driver to the Border

By late morning we had arrived at the border crossing and back into Jordan. We said our heartfelt thanks to Gadi (our Israeli guide) and it was time for some sad goodbyes. The crossing took about an hour and was a bit ridiculous but eventually we would make the 100 metre or so walk across neutral territory to the Jordanian customs and passport centre.

Our Jordanian guide, James, is also a Christian but has lived in the USA and speaks fluent English, in fact he speaks at speed so is a little difficult to keep up with him. We boarded a smaller older bus that took us to a remote village where we boarded 3 x 4 wheel drive jeeps to make a rough, bumpy and sometimes scary 5 mile trip over red sand into the furthermost point of what is called Wadi Rum. The huge sandstone mountains tower on each side of this magnificent desert valley. Our guide gives us a very interesting talk on the development of language using symbols and carvings on the rock walls as his blackboard.

On our way out we stopped over at a Bedouin camp for glasses of tea and to buy souvenirs. The tea is great and it is fun watching the locals smoke their hubbly bubbly and chat away on their mobile phones. A camel driver passes by on his animal with laptop at the ready. Peter took a terrific photo of a camel standing alongside a speed hump sign - sorry we can't put it on this blog. By the way our camera has lost battery power hence the shortage of photos on this day's blog. (And incidentally one of our suitcases has lots its wheel - these things only ever happen when you are in the desert!)
By the time we reached our hotel in Petra it was dark and late and we were not able to take dinner until 8.45 pm. So it was straight off to bed after a big day and some rest before another big one tomorrow.

Border Crossing  - Israel to Jordan in the south of Israel

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