Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Wadi Musa

Why are the guidebooks so tough on poor Wadi Musa? It’s a great hillside town, with the echo of an amphitheatre, which magnifies the glorious calls to prayer, which punctuate the day. Here, the muezzins seem to intertwine their beautiful songs, both with the other mosques, and with their own chanting. Sitting on the balcony under a Bedouin tent, feeling the gentle breezes wafting across the valley, watching the sun move downwards towards the mountains of Petra and listening to the funky Arabic music as we await another tasty all-you-can-eat-buffet: well, this is as close as we have made it to paradise so far on this adventure! So, after our day of exploration around Petra yesterday, what, exactly, have we done today? Absolutely nothing!
Well, that’s not entirely true, but even intrepid travellers sometimes need days in their busy schedules when they are not haring around from A to B, or looking at the must-sees of B, or jumping off B… So today we decided just to sit back and chill! But before the big chill, we desperately needed to get our hands on some cash. Jordan is surprisingly expensive, and everybody seems to round prices up, which means that we have, admittedly, been caught out on money.
Simon had trouble getting cash in exchange for his travellers’ cheques today. The banker was very reluctant and, infact, refused to exchange them for him because Simon didn’t have the receipt slip with the cheque denominations and numbers written down. The banker later noticed the unmarked receipt, upon which Simon should have written the cash values down and stowed away somewhere, but he still refused to carry out the exchange. Must be a security thing. Without cash, Simon foresaw a tricky scenario, so much miffage then ensued!
We left the bank and Jon grabbed Simon’s bag and took out the travellers’ cheques, the unmarked receipt and a pen, and he copied the serial numbers from the cheques to the receipt, not forgetting to write the cash denominations as well. We returned to the bank and presented the newly marked receipt and Simon got his cash. So, the banker’s routine wasn’t very secure at all really, because anybody could have done it! Well, this team strikes again!
Although Jordan seems to be very expensive, can it be that this is the price that we have to pay to be in such a beautiful location? We may very well treat ourselves to yet another day of chillage tomorrow, for soon our programme is to encompass the Wadi Rum in all its glory (site of much Lawrence of Arabia shenanigans) and the Dead Sea. So keep your eyes peeled for more antics and special pictures!

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