Monday, April 9, 2012

Wadi Rum, Aqaba, and Spring Break

At last, the long awaited Spring Break has arrived. Or, did arrive. School started back up again today and everyone is now tan and eager for the end of the year.

Spring Break brought many surprises.

Has anyone heard of the Foreign Service Youth Foundation, or the FSYF? They have a newsletter that they send out and Foreign Service kids submit articles for it.

Well, back in May I sent in an article, and it was published in the newsletter! So, if you ever get the chance, take a look at it. I really enjoyed reading what other kids had submitted, too. The newsletter for this month was on things that us kids love, so it was really interesting hearing about how different everyone was.

We also had a recent visit from Dad, which is always great. Only two more months and he’s home for good. I can’t wait.

You can’t have a Spring Break and not visit anywhere here in Jordan. There are too many amazing places here that I’ll miss way too much when we leave. Our family, along with several other embassy families, drove down to Wadi Rum for a night, and then went to Aqaba for a couple days.

Wadi Rum is one of those places that is so amazing and grand and beautiful that I could write a whole entire post on it. Honestly, it’s one of my favorite places here. It’s basically a desert, but it’s a desert with gigantic rock formations and red, red sand. There are sand dunes and camels and Bedouin tents scattered about, and it is absolutely amazing. The first time we took a trip to Wadi Rum, we stayed in the more traditional tents surrounded by these giant rocks. We took a two hour long camel ride (fun, but not when your camel decides it wants to start running), and drove through the desert touring all the best sites there. There were also several cars that got stuck in the deep sand and had to get pushed out.

This time we stayed at a lodge and were taken on a tour in these big pickup trucks that sped over the sand until all of our foreheads were red from the sand implanted in them. It’s one of the best things ever.

All us kids climbed the rocks, climbed the sand dunes, and being the crazy Americans that we are, brought sleds and sled down these sand dunes. And let me tell you, climbing up them is one of the most painful things I have ever done. You can’t even walk up them because they’re so steep you’re basically crawling. And for every two feet you go up, you go one foot down, because the sand just keeps falling back. But you get to the top and it is so worth it, even if you’re breathing so hard that you can’t tell at first.

I’m going to miss Wadi Rum.

Then we drove down to Aqaba, the beach city on the Red Sea where all our goodies that are shipped over from America come in. We went out on this big boat with a ton of other people and spent the day snorkeling and visiting a castle over in Egypt. Yeah. The boat took us across the border and to a small island off the coast of Egypt where we got to explore an old, crumbling castlle. 

I can’t say Aqaba is the best beach in the world, but the snorkeling down there (on days when the water is clear), is amazing.

I’m going to miss Aqaba, too.

I’m also going to miss Spring Break, which took way to long to get here and left way to soon.

And now, for those of you who have never been fortunate to experience Wadi Rum, here are some pictures.

Happy Spring Break, everyone!

All of the kids up on top of the giant rock. I'm there in the purple shirt and the sunglasses.

When I said pickup trucks I wasn't kidding. They were literally hauling us around in these 1950s trucks. At least they didn't get stuck in the sand like ours did.

This is me and Dad after climbing to the top of a rock on top of another rock. You can't see from the picture, but it was actually pretty high up and terrifying.

On top of one of the sand dunes we attempted to catch our breath. Then we rolled to the bottom and climbed up again. And again.

1 comment:

  1. Love the pix, loved the trip! I still have to post our pictures. Thanks for helping out with Princess Ainsley....