Thursday, 16 August 2007

My 3 week vacation in Jordan!

After getting the "great" news about being transferred from my beloved Bluefin to a new streamer vessel (which is another story), i flew to my home country: Jordan!

The trip itself was quite good, a nice quick flight from Gatwick to Amsterdam, enough time there to go around and do some shopping, then a nice comfy flight to Amman. But as soon as i got out of the airport the fun began. First i had to wait till the bus starts moving to Amman, then to arrive there, that ended up with me standing in the bus station at 9p.m., last "big good" bus left already, and my only choice at that time was an old minibus that took about two hours to get to my dear Irbid (taking into consideration that the road takes max. an hour even if you obey all speed limits on it!)
When i reached Irbid, it was already late and catching a taxi home was another adventure, found one at last and managed to get to the correct place.
Got in, greeted everybody, my grandfather looked really tired and he was complaining about it himself, next day he was taken to the hospital. And as my fahter had to stay next to his father, i spent most of my days just sitting inside the house in an almost emotionless state, running small errands here and there, printing and copying some papers, driving people around and so on.
The only change from that was my trips to Amman, first one was just me and my mom, we took my father's car, i safely found the Norwegian embassy to apply for my Schengen visa, drove around the city (which i totally didn't know) for a while, then managed to get to the road that takes me to Irbid, on my way went to a mall, and decided to eat as i was really hungry, the other problem was me not drinking tea before going out, so i developped a headache, which grew stronger and made me feel sick, and i don't need to tell you what happenned when i ate!!! Got really weak, my stomach totally disturbed, and was in absolutely no condition neither to go around nor to drive, just sat there until my stomach got a bit in order and when i regianed a bit of strength drove back home.
Second time i took my mom and my sisters and we went to spend a few days at my aunt's house in Amman for a change of atmosphere, this started with me taking a sharp turn and a car hitting me, not so bad but i ended up paying quite a nice amount to fix both cars, apart from that my stay there was good, managed to get my visa and travel insurance while i was there, did some shopping and finally bought a T-shirt with an owl on, i wanted that for years, and no i don't believe they bring bad luck.
During these few days, i grew quite familiar with the city, and now i know how to get around without getting lost to most of the places i need. The city is nice, organized, taken care off, with some really nice areas and malls, probably staying there was the thing i enjoyed the most during that vacation. It's nothing as Cairo though, it's more quiet, less populated, less crowdy, less energetic, less live! But still a nice city to live in probably.
The third and last time i went to Amman was to collect my air tickets, that was two days before i flew to Norway to join my new ship.
Apart from that, i did some relative visiting, celebrated the high school grades of two of my cousins, took some of the family to dinner once, was taken by a cousin to dinner another time, went out with my mom and met a russian lady who's married to a Jordanian and lives in a village near-by, and generally had slow days in Irbid.
I was so happy to fly out of there, and was even happier when i finally reached Bergen, although my way there wasn't covered with silk either, they stopped me for bag inspection in Amman airport, i had to stand in a long extremely slow queue to get my boarding pass in Istanbul, was stopped by customs in Oslo where i sat for a long time while they checked my passport, visa and seaman's book and then luggage was delayed in Bergen, so in general, i wasn't really happy about all that...actually, quite pissed off!
Seeing the vessel and starting to work only made it worse, but as i mentioned above: that's another story...
I'm sounding a bit too miserable, right? well, it's true i was bored to death in Jordan, that i was totally frustrated throughout my flight to Bergen, and even more when i signed on the new vessel, but don't let that fool you, life is like a sine-wave, it's not high all the time, nor low all the time, bad times will pass and life will shine again, and regardless of all the things i may not like, i love it!

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