My Story…Our Story: Let’s Talk About Depression

Doug Leddin’s courage to talk about his struggle with depression has given me the courage to do the same. Take a moment to listen to Doug’s story. It’s his story. It’s my story. It’s our story. I am telling my story on my travel blog, because the spirit of my blog is the spirit of…

Leaving Wadi Rum – Part 1

I said good-bye to Ahmed at the campsite at 8 a.m. He had guests on a two-day tour so they were leaving for another day sightseeing in the desert and he wouldn’t be returning to the village before I left. I looked at the our jeep and our three American guests and their luggage. There…

The Wonders of Wadi Rum

Stunning sandstone mountains sculpted over millions of years by the elements. Great granite rock formations rising from the sandy valley. It’s a geologist’s wet dream and a traveller’s fantasy. T.E. Lawrence wrote about it during his participation in the Arab Revolt of 1917-18. Lawrence of Arabia was filmed here. It’s 720 square kilometers of protected…

Call Me Ichchryim

It took a while, but I received my Bedouin name. I had been dropping hints for a few days – if you consider “If I don’t have a Bedouin name soon, you can call me a taxi back to Aqaba” a hint. It happened unexpectedly one night. I was chatting with Sydney from Oregon. She…

Walking With Ibrahim

On days when we have guests, one of the guides drives me and Ibrahim to the desert camp around 1PM. Ibrahim is the camp cook and caretaker. He takes out the groceries and supplies from the village for the overnight guests, cleans the camp from the last day’s guests, prepares dinner and smokes a lot…

Grab A Goat, Would Ya!

It’s my first full morning in Wadi Rum and I hear a commotion. It is coming from the back of the building where I live and work. I am just twenty-four hours in Wadi Rum Village and have not checked out the property too closely, so I go for a look. The building where I…

How Do You Say “Scared Shitless” In Arabic? – Part 2

When Ahmed picks me up at the Visitors’ Centre, he immediately apologizes. He has a bad toothache. He explains he needs to sleep. Even in this condition, he is a gracious and kind host. He shows me where I will be working. I have a room at the office too, but will only stay there…

How Do You Say “Scared Shitless” In Arabic? – Part 1

There’s a saying, “Life starts where your comfort zone ends.” For me, life started on January 12, 2014. It’s a day I will never forget. I didn’t sleep too well my last night in Aqaba – ironic as I had a king size bed and four fluffy pillows. I was spending my last night with…

Acclimating in Aqaba

There’s something about seaside towns. They’re more laid back and chill than other places. Aqaba, Jordan is the epitome of this – a hip little town on the Red Sea. As hip as you can get in the Middle East and the Kingdom of Jordan. I will be living and volunteering in Wadi Rum for…

Bloggus Interruptus

Three hundred and three. That’s how many days it’s been since my last post. I guess I have some explaining to do. Laziness and life took over. Cairo threw me for a loop too. It took me almost a month to write my two Cairo posts – the last entries on my blog until now….

In Tahrir Square

At least once a day I visit Tahrir Square. It’s a 15 minute walk through the hotel blockades, across three busy streets, and past the Egyptian Museum. Protestors have blocked Tahrir Square to traffic with metal barriers and barbed wire. There’s been an ongoing sit-in at the Square since November 22nd when President Morsi issued…

Conspicuous in Cairo

There was something exciting and adventurous about traveling to Cairo. The world watched Egypt’s Arab Spring live from Tahrir Square as the revolution unfolded. A revolution that was successful in ousting President Mubarak. But the honeymoon is over and Egyptians grow more frustrated each day with President Morsi. There’s exciting and adventurous and there’s ‘what…