Today was Jordan's Independence Day (May 25th) from Britain and it was most definitely fantastic. We had originally told our friend Ahmed that we wanted to go visit him in Aqaba but then we found out that there were a ton of celebrations in the city including a military parade where the king and queen might appear. So Ahmed decided he would meet us in Amman and we would have a little party with him and then we would go to see the parade. We hoped it would be a fun day and knew that spending some time with Ahmed was always fun.
|Ahmed and I in the ampitheater|
As we left the amphitheater, Ahmed told us we needed to stop at a mosque so he could do his afternoon prayers but on the way I saw a 'dagger' workshop and I just had to stop in. There we met an older gentleman and his brother who hand made traditional bedouin and arab daggers. He said the business had been in his family for over 5 generations and that they had even made a dagger for the king (he had an official picture right there). I got to watch him engrave a dagger and talked with him for quite awhile. I told him I would come back soon, when I have a better idea of what I want engraved on a knife or what type of knife that I want. He said alright and probably didn't believe me one bit. However, I love little shops where they make the craft by hand and would rather pay double for a product I saw made or had commissioned than to pay for a crappy product that was supposedly made by hand by a factory worker in China. Anyway, he was a really nice man and I look forward to going back and speaking with him in the future.
|The mosque where I took a nap "groofwa"|
|Myself, Ahmed, Austin and the Bedouin Dancers|
On a side note, I realize a lot better now why Arab boys are so touchy feely. During the party, there were absolutely no women involved. The only women I saw were on the periphery and they were not having any fun. That meant that the Shabab had to dance with each other and have fun in that manner rather that doing the unthinkable in their culture and have physical contact with a woman (btw, that's an exaggeration). Anyway, it just taught me a lot more about the people I am around every day.
|One of my many chances to dance with the Shabab|
|With the Sheikhs again, just a sweet picture|
|Living it up with Sheikh Yusef and Sheikh Hussin|
Seriously, can you believe the experiences I am having here in Jordan? I think the key is simply to try lots of things and never be afraid to make a fool of yourself. It happens to me enough anyway so why should I be afraid right? Anyway, I have definitely found the Arabic people to be amazingly hospitable and nice in every way and although I miss many things in America I am thoroughly enjoying my time here. Till next time!