Salaam! This is a reflection of the crossing the Red Sea, followed by some traveler’s impressions and photos below.
Moses crossed the Red Sea, but in a way very different from the quick flyover we were about to do.
Where Moses had spend his entire adult years, we had scurried around for only 7 days.
Where he and his entire tribe of thousands of Israelites were lead by a pillar of cloud by day and a whirling tower of roaring flame by night, we blinked as it passed by under us.
Where land met water, and Moses and his terrified herd had reached what seemed the brink of massacre and slaughter at the edge of the Red Sea, as Pharaoh and his chariots thundered down onto them, we now quietly flew thousands of miles above that site of God’s glory and intervention.
Where Moses and those stiff-necked people wandered for forty years, in widespread circles, dragging their families and herds over red dusty sharp crags and mountains, where God’s law was chiseled by heaven into stone, and given into the hands of men, we flew nonchalantly over that.
Finally, we landed, in Amman Jordan, just north of the mountain where Moses, obedient to God’s will, watched his people enter the land of milk and honey, and then sometime later, gave up his ghost.
Seven days was all we were given to see 6000 years of Egyptian history, and half of Moses’ life.
Three hours was all it took to fly over the Read Sea, the Sinia peninsula, to the River Jordan, and glimpse the land that the Israelites had taken 40 years to arrive at.
This land, I was now looking down at as the plane descended for landing, was also the outer rim of the Cradle of Civilization.
If Egypt, so rich in history, had been incredible to take in, then this ancient land of Jordan, arguably even older in culture, would be even more overwhelming to behold.
We landed, were whisked out to our car, and the instant impression from stepping off the plane into the airport, to leaving it, driving down the highways, and through the neighborhoods was, “Wow, Jordan is clean!”
Egypt was wonderful, don’t get me wrong, but it seems like each person there considered it somebody else’s job to pick up after himself. If you’ve ever been to Naples during trash strike, and then the crisp, clean streets and subways of Portugal, you’d have an accurate picture of the contrast.
Our hotel was in a quiet neighborhood. It felt pretty safe, so while my brother tried McDonalds and Starbucks, and their complimentary wifi, I decided to download the map he recommended and explore the streets of Amman. (Maps.ME -it’s like offline Google maps, and wonderful to have when you don’t always have wifi.)
It was a Sunday, so I was hoping to find a Catholic Church with an Eastern or Latin Mass. In the end, I found a Church kitty corner to a mosque. Both buildings were beautiful. But there is nothing so welcoming as Our Lady with her arms widestretched to receive you.
My phone was running out of battery juice fast, so my visit had to be fast.
I managed to snake my way through the evening traffic and quiet neighborhoods in just enough time to wash up for our first meal together with our new group and guide, Hmaid.
Our group was small, interesting, and well educated, and our guide seemed like he really had a passion for showing his country to newcomers.
We went to a restaurant that originally started in a bedouin tent, and the decor and feel of the place bear witness to its origins. After a delicious meal and comfortable introductions, we made our way back to our hotel, had a wee bit of a constitutional, and prepped for a busy day ahead.
But it was during the meal that I found my self very grateful to my brother Tim. When asked why he had come to Jordan, Tim said, “Well, why not? And My sister wanted to; I knew if I didn’t go, she wouldn’t, so that’s why I came.” Thanks Tim. Honestly, I think I would have done it all the same within a tour group, but I appreciate very deeply your investment in time and money to make the trip happen for me. I don’t think it would have been as much fun if you hadn’t been there, and I’m sure I would have been married for even less camels if it weren’t for your grave presence. Really, you’re the best.
Thanks for reading! I appreciate taking time you took to make it all the way down to this part of the post! If you enjoyed this, please do give it a like,and follow, if you’re not part of the journey!
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