I’m here! I’m in Amman—it is hot and dry, but very breezy. Jordan is desert-like in its terrain and almost everything is a beige color. I don’t have much to report, I’m afraid I haven’t done very much except sit in the hotel and write things, but I have made some observations. Jordan is a Muslim country, and fairly conservative. I’ve been told that close friendship between men and women is something that does not exist. The women in our group were advised to dress modestly, and not bare too much of our arms or legs. When I walked into the hotel, the security guard couldn’t even check me with the metal beepy thing (does it have a name?) because it would be inappropriate to wave it all around my feminine body…rrrrr. Anyways, I went to the gym shortly after arriving and the man at the front desk sent me down to the “ladies only” section:
Men are really, really not allowed. Also, I saw this sign in the women’s locker room:
No nudity? In a locker room? I was perplexed. But, ladies have to shower…don’t they? The raging feminist in me wanted to run around in booty shorts and a bra! WHY ARE MY LADYPARTS PREVENTING ME FROM DRESSING NORMALLY IN A GYM! But. I’m being overly dramatic. I’m sure one day soon I’ll be able to step back and examine the reasoning behind this segregation in both a sensitive and articulate way. Honestly, I didn’t feel particularly stifled—just strange. My father even told me I should tie my hair back while in Jordan, and not let it run wild and free in its gypsy way (I’m paraphrasing). So, this will be interesting. For now, I’ll just tell you that Amman is a beautiful, breezy city and my hair is in a nice, tame ponytail.