Mud Bath at the Dead Sea

Trip Start Mar 26, 2011
Trip End May 01, 2011

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Flag of Jordan  ,
Friday, April 22, 2011

We packed up yet again and left Aqaba....this was the last day of the tour and we were all sad to see it ending.  We had a few stops along the way to the Dead Sea.  The landscape was dry and rocky with a strong haze to obscure the vista.  As we entered the Dead Sea valley, we began to see more and more signs of agriculture.  The Jordanian mountains provided water for irrigating the fields.  There were banana trees, vegetables, identified by the truckloads of tomatoes and melons that we passed or passed us.  Our driver was quite skillful and drove quickly passing cars and trucks all the while.

We took advantage of one scenic lookout toward the near end of the Sea.  The waves seemed slower and more viscous...or so it seemed.  Other tourists jumped down on the rocky cliffs to have their photos taken on the edge.  Our group scorned such bravado.  About an hour from Amman, we stopped at the Dead Sea resort hotel complex.  The Dead Sea hospital was here too and had its own showers.  There were tiers of terraces and steps to actually get to the sea.  Erwin stayed behind at a cafe to guard our valuables. 

Only Pam, Tom, Adrian and I wanted to go in.  Tom and I were the only ones to smear the free mud on for our mud baths.  It was a little sticky...I tried to let it dry before going in to rinse it off but it was taking too long to dry so I went in anyway.  It was fun to try to float.   Erwin said it was about 30% salt as the sea has evaporated a lot during the last thousands of years.  Potassium is taken form the shores and we saw several large plants.  After I got the mud off, my skin did feel really smooth!  We had to rush a bit because the sky had clouded over and then it started to sprinkle.  After a quick look at the gift shop, we started toward the bus.  It was then I realized I forgot to collect some sand for Jane so I had to "run" all the way back down and up again.  Erwin told the bus driver I had forgotten something....which I had....sort of.  We left just in time because it started to pour once we were in the
bus.  Who would have thought we would be presented with cool weather and
rain here in the deserts of Jordan. 

Once in Amman, we settled into our rooms.  Catherine and I got a suite with one single bed and a queensize bed.  We also had a kitchenette of sorts...with sink and teapot but no cuttlery or dishes.  I checked and was told that I could keep the room for my extra night....which was very nice.  We attended to our various chores...Catherine packed for the plane trip back home.  I downloaded some photos.   We had agreed to meet at 6 pm for apperitivo and then have dinner in the restaurant at 7 since folks had to be up very early to go to the airport.  I ran to the bottle shop for some wine and beer for Erwin.  Tom came along and bought some stuff.  Another Explore person came while we were there saying she could tell we were Explore people and we met Martin on the way back.

The hotel buffet was very nice.  Claire and Adrian had bought a cake for Betty's birthday on the 26th.  We toasted the end of the trip and happy future trips to all.  There were some reminiscences but no one became maudlin.  Several people headed for bed leaving Martin and Tom to finish the vodka....   When I got back to the room, Catherine was still awake so we talked a bit before trying to get some sleep.  I had promised the group I would see them off but everyone had said good-bye to me just in case I didn't make it.

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