Jordan 1996: More

Not exactly Jordan, but on the way there. This is the Eurostar train in Waterloo Station, in London. I took it through the Channel Tunnel, which had recently opened. Lots of fun.

Not only ancient civilization has left its mark on the desert. The sign warns in three languages of mines in the vicinity.

This was down near the Jordan River, border between Jordan (the nation) and the West Bank, which was once part of Jordan, then was occupied by Israel, and now is in the process of becoming an independent (more or less) state, a homeland for the Palestinian people.

Right in the center of Amman there were ancient ruins to be explored—a far cry from New York’s streets, where hardly anything goes back even 200 years.

If you ignore the drizzle that runs horizontally across the negative, you see the prospect that lay before Moses when he said farewell to his people and sent them off into the Promised Land. This is the “pisgah,” or outlook, where legend says the parting took place. We are looking west from the foothills of Amman, across the Jordan Valley. The dark patch on the far left is the north end of the Dead Sea; the valley is below sea level, and the Dead Sea is the lowest spot on the face of the earth. Across the valley from here is Israel; on a good day you can see the foothills rising up toward Jerusalem, and on an exceptionally clear day you can see the Holy City itself.

It was remarkable throughout the trip to see how a short bus ride could take you through centuries of strife and contention.

Petra 1 . . . Petra 2 . . . Jerash . . . More . . . Allenby Crossing

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