This in fact is not a love letter per se but may sound like one because there are indeed many things I love about Jordan. This is also an attempt to balance out my latest list of grieviences concerning Jordanian Etiquette, which in retrospect may have given a more darker impression of Jordan that I had not intended. These are more general and not all relevent to society.
Once again, in no particular order other than that which they emerge from my mind:
1- I love the fact that every taxi driver has a story to tell many of which concern a girl he once picked up
2- The sight of young men swarming to Shawarma Reem and Karam while just across the street McDonalds is almost vacant.
3- The ability to just cruise around. (preferably in search of strange looking people)
4- Playing tarneeb on a balcony in the midsummer’s air at 3am with 3 good friends and some coffee.
5- Every Sunrise
6- Every Sunset
7- The feeling you get when seeing the Khazneh of Petra through the cracks in the hills for the first time and every time after
8- Watching final football matches at the Ahli Club
9- Lebnani cocktails: honey but no cream
10- The traffic is so bad in Amman but it gaurentees a conversation starter
11- Everything is so close including friends
12- Buying burned copies of movies on the street for 2 JDs’
13- The ability to return burned copies of movies when the quality is bad.
14- Mashawi Picnics (bbq)
15- The 15 piaster swirled ice cream sold on Duwar Firas that everyone lines up for
16- Ayoub at Ras Beirut & Saeed at Ousra restaurant [workers who make you laugh no matter who you are]
17- Snow Days in Jordan
18- The Jordanized feeling of drinking cheap bottled Pepsi with friends while sitting on a curb
19- Cat Fights…literally the fights between the street cats
20- Gahwa-nation i.e. the long hill after Blue Fig where guys drink Turkish coffee
21- The sheer pride in finding a parking spot in Abdoun on a Thursday night
22- Arab tourists in Amman: love’m or hate’m they add a sense of Arab multiculturalism to Amman
23- When a wedding mawkab (procession) passes by or Jordan wins a football match you suddenly have an excuse to honk your horn like a crazy person. It’s like an early birthday gift.
24- When a car accident occurs everyone gets down to look and usually help.
25- Empty Amman roads in the early morning.
26- Jordanian theatrical comedies
27- The high hills of Kerak
28- Mansaf (+ jameed Keraki)
29- When a Shepard crosses the street with his sheep cars stop patiently. There is still respect for the Bedouins
30- The rusted Captain’s ship at Jbayha Amusement Park and the realistic screams of its brave riders
31- When stopping to ask a stranger for directions in Kerak you will almost always get an invitation to dinner.
32- The Haunted Hills of Umm il Sous
33- Creative new takes on old customs i.e. shawarma wok, saj and the falafal place beside Faris in Swefieh
34- Bowling at Abu Dahab and Quds sandwiches right after
35- If you ever see two very old men Jordanian men talking sit yourself next to them. You will hear the most hilarious stories ever told.
36- Floating in the Dead Sea (does not include getting eyes stung)
37- The hills of Ajloun. It’s like being on a cloud if you go in the spring.
38- When completely broke a friend will gladly pay for you and forgive the debt
39- Humos, Foul and Falafal, the staple of the rich and poor.
40- Warm Pita bread fresh from the oven
41- The smell of a Bakery
42- Walking the trails of the Dana hills.
43- Watching the Sun set and rise on a hill top in Wadi Rum
44- The red red sand of Wadi Rum
45- Haggling over prices in downtown Amman
46- The souk il 7aramyeh (Criminal’s Souk or Black Market)
47- Fresh and cheap Fruit and Vegetables
48- The call of morning prayer
49- Visiting people on Eid and getting some good old home made ma3mool
50- Cozying up in winter by the heater and reading a book
There are of course many more things but 50 is my maximum.
Feel free to add on.
“No need for fossil fuels or headaches. Nothing better than the natural way!”