Visiting Jordan with Kids: Settled into Amman
If you missed our Day 1 in Jordan, you can check it out here.
Today Markus discovered the bidet sprayer in the bathroom. I don’t think I need to tell you that everything was wet. The floor, the walls, the toilet, the sink. Thankfully it is all tile and the squeegee with a cloth washed it up nicely. Our place is new (we are the first people to stay in it) and the tiled walls needed a good wipe down from the left over grout and drywall dust anyway, right?
We went on a scavenger hunt for cats today in Amman. Cat in arabic is “bisay” and Jordan is full of ferrel cats; the boys love hunting for them between buildings, under cars and in restaurants. After turning right out of our building, right and the next street and right again, you would think we would have ended up back at our building. But no, we ended up about 4 blocks north. It was more of a pentagon style walk than a square. Jordan’s roads are no grid systems. Next time I might take a look at google maps before we wander. It was all good though, we ended up at the KFC and the boys played in the play area with a few local kids (who were proud to speak English to them) and then we walked back to our apartment, with the sky alight in oranges and pinks as the sun set over Amman.
SO what is the weather like in Amman in March?
It is winter. Amman often gets snow. The slushy snow that quickly disappears or turns to rain. But because of the skinny, curving, hilly streets, most people are forced to stay home due to the conditions! A snow day for all!
There is no snow now. Today was about 13 C, tomorrow it looks like rain and 11 C (low of 5 C) but the sun is due to come out in the next couple days and the forecast is showing highs of 18-23 C and lows of 8-12 C. Spring is on the way; I love the heat, so bring it on.
We will visit Petra next week, when the rain stops. Flash flooding is common in Petra this time of year and can be quite dangerous, despite the Nabataeans dam and drainage systems.
More about our Apartment Rental in Amman
We have TONS of TV channels, from all over the Middle East. I have found a little kids cartoon channel from Egypt that is in English, but like little kids shows, the music is repetitive and gets annoying fast! 787 is the “Mickey” channel, showing Western movies with Arabic subtitles or Arabic Disney movies (we watched parts of Aladdin and Cinderella last night in Arabic). Mattias is getting annoyed and says “it is not in our languge” but it is amazing how little words were actually spoken in old Disney movies like Dumbo or in the original Tom and Jerry. When he is not being crabby, the picks out words like “yalla” (lets go), “shakrun” (thank you) amongst the Arabic. When we are lucky, we will get newer movies, like Minions and Storks, which have arabic subtitles only and the kids are in heaven!
What else can I tell you about Jordan?
My earlier reflections on Jordan that “everyone speaks English” is a little overstated. Everyone in the touristy areas and the hospitality industry speaks enough English to cater to the tourists. The guys working at the Mango and Strawberry smoothie shop in my apartment understand enough to get me pretty close to what I want to order, but I highly doubt they really understand. It is lots of smiles and nods around here. Two or Three arabic words per day is all i dare attempt to remember, but can successfully order “shay ma nana tea with mint, “shay ma sukar” tea with sugar or “shay ma sugar wa na’na” tea with sugar and mint.
Ive got the Arabic essentials if I can get myself a hot cup of tea. Now on to things like “yes and no” …. tomorrow. Because I am in a residential area, no where near downtown hotels and restaurants, I doubt most of these guys have seen many tourists (if any).
Tonight is Thursday night, the start of the weekend in Jordan (Friday and Saturday are weekend days here). I am not sure why this part of the world takes Friday and Saturday and North America has designated Saturday and Sunday, but I will see if I can find out!
Hopefully the kids will sleep tonight. Having an apartment on -1 floor with no window is hard as they have no concept of what time it is. With the warmer weather coming I hope we will not spend much time in here.
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