Friday, April 13, 2012

Travel to (the Hashemite Kingdom of) Jordan - Day 1

 Here we are beginning our first day in the country of Jordan!!  This is an Arab nation, mostly Muslim, and we no longer see Hebrew on the road signs. We are climbing a tel at the Biblical site of Succoth, which is just across the Jordan River Valley from Israel.  Those mountains in the distance are in Israel, and in the flat valley between us and them runs the Jordan River. Jacob had the dream of the ladder to heaven and wrestled with the angel all night at Penuel, not far from here.
 Took this pic from the bus, just riding by in a town, and this little boy was staring at the bus.
 Another pic from the bus in a Jordanian village, women stopping to talk in the street.
 This boy was standing guard on a market street, watching the chickens.  Here you can choose which one to make your dinner with tonight.
 Lots of traffic in this Jordanian village, so common in the middle east.
 A typical vegetable market...but see the guy on the right on the sign?  That's King Abdullah II, the King of Jordan.  His picture is literally EVERYWHERE.
 Looking way down at the Yarmuk river, close to the Syrian border. Do you see the broken bridge?  This bridge was blown up during an Israeli/Arab conflict, I think they said back in 1948.  Was never fixed.
 We are at the ancient city ruins of Gadara, looking over the hills toward the Sea of you see the Sea?  We are in Jordan, but very close to Israel.
 Standing on some basalt (volcanic rock) columns at Gadara.  This city was a thriving Roman style city in Jesus' day, one one the 10 Decapolis cities.  It was near here that He cast the demons out of the man into the pigs that ran over the cliff. And it was this city that would not let Jesus come in their gates afterward. A sad commentary, because they did not know what they were missing.
 Still at Gadara, Steven is sitting where an altar in a post-Biblical church was. This church was octagonal (8-sided), one of many octagonal churches in Jordan.
 Here's a theater in Jordan.  You can't tell, but the seats we are sitting on actually have backs to them, and are comfortable in spite of being carved of basalt stone.
 Here you can see the carved theater seat!
 Olive trees are everywhere in Jordan!  Here there are many amongst the spring wildflowers.
We are on the tel at Ramoth-Gilead, a city that the wicked King Ahab just had to have, and actually lost his life trying to conquer this city.  Well, Sam found a bone at the site, and was playing cave-man here with Aubrey.  I have to put up with all this frivolity:)

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