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Bed·ou·in (noun or adj.) ˈbe-də-wən, ˈbed-wən 1. Desert dweller, nomadic Arab of the desert. 2. A wanderer or rover.

I’m going to be very honest:  my time leading up to Jordan was very emotional. Like, emotional in a bad way. Which was odd, because this grant was something I had worked for and wanted for a long time. I found myself really not wanting to leave the United States—I was so attached to my friends and family back home. I even stayed in my college town for the summer after I graduated because I wasn’t ready to say goodbye. I tend to get very attached to people and situations. There are things I get used to and can’t imagine my life without:  a morning run along a river, late night talks with my best friend, a certain kind of coffee, quinoa and lentils for dinner, etc. I acknowledge that change is good for my soul, but it’s not in my nature to deal with uncertainty in a healthy way. And I just felt uncertain about Amman, about the connections I would make here, and how difficult it would be to be away from the people who love me. But despite the tired complaining of my last post, I have truly been encouraged this first week. I feel very loved and taken care of by people I’ve only just met, which I guess is the Jordanian way. The culture here is very warm and inviting—the moment you sit down at someone’s house they rush to bring you soda or coffee or tea. The moment you stand up to leave is met with inquiries about when you’ll come back, and that you absolutely must return soon. Bas bidi it-tumun alaykun is a favorite phrase of my landlady’s each time she knocks—I just want to make sure you’re ok. I think it would be very hard to feel lonely here, to feel like there is no one to reach out to. Also, my group is incredible. I’ve never met such funny, intelligent, and down to earth people all in once place. I’m writing this in my bed and doing kind of a muted happy-dance under the covers. It’s just been a really great day. Hamdulillah.

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