Wadi Rum (The Valley of the Moon) ~~ December 28, 2017

Today was our visit to the ancient city of Petra, and I am sorry to say that I have nothing to say about it since I was laid up in a hotel room with a dodgy knee.

[Gorgeous pictures of Petra, taken by Gale:

The fall I took skidding in the sand of the Timna Valley, scrambling to take a picture of a rock-climbing Jerry (Gale got the shot here) left me with a whacked out knee cap, skinned (tore my leggings), bloody, swollen and sore.

Jerry, photo credit Gale

Me, newly fallen. Photo credit Gale, again.

I kind of limped through the next couple of days and then yesterday, when we were in the haunted, rocky canyons of Wadi Rum, I slipped in sand again (red sand this time for a little variation) and landed on the same knee. I could feel it about to happen and tried to avert a direct hit, but I just made it worse.

Maria, Tom and Gale, not falling in Wadi Rum

Jerry, not falling in Wadi Rum

Me, contemplating my toes, post fall in Wadi Rum.

So my knee is not bloody any more, but it is more sore and more swollen. As the day got longer and colder it stiffened up. Today I’m hobbled.

So no Petra for me. Jerry came back with gorgeous photos and some rocks as a present to cheer me up. They did, though I was not opposed to a day of solitude. I am far too introverted to spend all my days with people. A day alone is good, and this one gives me a reason to come back to see Petra.

And really, Wadi Rum was about as much beauty as I can process in a 48 hour period.

It wasn’t far from Aqaba, where we headed after we crossed the border. We’d been staring at Jordan’s only port city from Eilat for two days, and now we were staring back at Eilat. New wonderful guide Maria Gadnaor, who has a different but still gripping story-telling style from her husband, took us to a terrific falafel place for lunch. Men sat downstairs, women and families (which included the odd man) sat upstairs. As tourists we could technically choose but they suggested “upstairs” when we arrived and upstairs we went.

Lunch was super. Perfect falafel nuggets, light and moist and crispy, with terrific bread and bowls of hummus, labne and salad. It’s all I need. Maybe a little za’atar, but that’s being picky.

As we left we saw the falafel production. A guy fed a machine the ground chick peas and herbs into a monster machine that pooped out uniformly sized falafel balls into hot oil at a rate that kept the temperature constant. What a production. I liked them a teeny bit less retroactively because they were not hand made.

Then we headed to Wadi Rum, aka The Valley of the Moon. I’m not sure why but we did see the moon rise there and it hung suspended right over the valley as the sun set. The area is Bedouin territory and most of it is preserved as a national park. We hopped onto benches in the open back of a truck with tires that could handle the sand and we headed into the valley to see odd sandstone formations, walks of granite, and enclosures between rock walls with spooky cave drawings and writing.

I’ve already detailed my I’ll-fated sand scampering so I’ll just add that the scenery was worth the injury and let the pictures speak for themselves.

Good night, Moon. 🌙

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