Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Eilat and Petra

For most of the story, check out the Photo Blog.

The cab debacle that I refer to, explained:

Before we left Tel Aviv, Ty made reservations with our hostel in Wadi Mousa (the city right outside the Petra ruins) to have us picked up at the border. So, upon arriving in Jordan, we were greeted by our very friendly and English-speaking driver and headed for the cab. There the situation got a bit pulse-quickening.

A pack of white cabs was parked near the road, waiting for people who were crossing. This was their 'territory', being the city of Aqaba. Our driver was not from town, and instead drove from Wadi Mousa to pick us up. Thus we had a problem that reminded me far too much of most Middle Eastern conflicts that I have learned about in school (admittedly, not the best way to learn about conflicts, but it's all I have). One group has territorial claim, and the other has a special arrangement that allows them to be there. Looking back, it is a bit humorous; at the time, it was far from it.

So we're loading our bags in the trunk of our Yellow cab when 4 drivers of the White cabs come to pay us a visit. About 5 minutes of intense arguing in Arabic ensued, with the three of us not altogether too sure what the heck to do. At one point, one of the drivers looked Ty in the eye and asked, "My friend, you want problem here? You get in this cab, you have problem." Ty stood frozen, as Josh and I did, and we waited for the arguing to start again. One of the White drivers put his arm in the trunk of the Yellow cab to keep our driver from closing it, but that proved to be an ill-fated move for a few of his forearm skin cells as our driver just closed it right on his arm. That triggered some pushing and shoving, a few punches (none landed - a sloppy fight, had to go to scorecard) and us looking at the border house for help. We caught the attention of some military personnel, who came to diffuse the situation.

In the end, we got in our cab and left, and had a great drive through the beautiful Jordanian countryside on our way to Wadi Mousa and Petra.

Enjoy the pictures -


1 comment:

Sherry Phillis said...

Mike, I just cannot believe how exciting your adventures in Israel are becoming. Your mom must be a nervous wreck. I think it is great you are experiencing all of this. I really enjoy reading your blog. You should really put all of this into a book with the pictures when you get home. You could publish it. I am serious. You really write that well. Have fun. Stay Safe, Sherry Phillis