I Love The Young Bedouins Of Petra!

When I am in Jordan, I have to go to Petra – every time if I can!

Petra is a must see if you are in the Middle East. But it’s not just the ancient and majestic buildings carved out of the high cliffs. It is the people who work there, especially the young “bedouins.”

The last time I was at Petra with a friend, I just hung out with the bedouin guys who make their living by taking people up the 800 steps to the monastery on their donkeys. They meet people from all over the world, speak at least a few sentences in many languages, and make you feel at home with their fun sense of humor. For example. . .

When you are struggling to get up on a donkey to go up the steep incline, they say, “Take your time. . .but hurry up!”

They crack jokes: “Why do you go to bed? Because the bed can’t come to you!”

When my wife was here with me last winter, she and I rode the donkeys to the monastery. She was terrified her donkey would go over the cliff as they met other donkeys who were coming down the narrow and steep stone steps. She would yell a few times and shout short prayers to heaven like “Jesus, help me!” Her bedouin guide would just say, “Don’t worry, lady, be happy.” (I was laughing most of the way to the top! I knew these guys would take good care of her!)

The best part of the day with these guys was just talking life, especially what life is like for them. It is so different from the life most of us know. It is slow, peaceful, and quiet.

It was also great to talk faith with my new young bedouin friends - Islam and Christianity. They shared with me. I shared with them. Building bridges of friendship, trust, and understanding. Building bridges, always building bridges.

So. . .if you get to the Middle East, be sure to check out Petra in Jordan. And while you are there, tell my young bedouin friends “marhaba” (hello) from Mark.

They might not remember me, but I sure won’t forget them.

3 thoughts on “I Love The Young Bedouins Of Petra!

    • Attacus, I am so sorry to hear of what you have written about the Petra bedouins. If this is true, it is a big problem and I am very sorry for the girls that have been taken advantage of.

      Let me just add this: when people behave in such bad or evil ways, it just goes to show how much they need Jesus. They need him – just like we all do.

      I pray the Petra bedouins – and all the girls you mentioned – will come to know Jesus. He is the answer.

  1. Keep Yourself Away From Wadi Rum!

    It is a very sad story that took place with me in Wadi Rum. It is unbelievable that such a thing can still happen in the 21st century.
    On January 1, 2014 I crossed the Israeli border with the only wish to spend a couple of days in a magnificent desert of Wadi Rum. At 1 pm Mosa – the owner of Wadi Rum Galaxy Camp, – to whom I came to work as a volunteer, came to pick me up. He was not just cute on that day. He was incredibly handsome. I fell in love with him from the very first moment. He seemed to feel the same. He was smiling and looked happy.
    On the way to Wadi Rum, I was feeling how this beautiful desert was putting magic on me. Everything was so familiar, as though I had been living there before. I was more than sure that it would be the right place to create a family and to stay for life.
    After 4 months (on May 13, 2014) I came back to Wadi Rum and we got married.
    The first weeks that I spent with his mother were not really happy. The family was very poor and lived in terrible conditions. No kitchen, no shower, no bed linen, – nothing. Children slept on the sand and very often there was no food at all. When the school year got over and all the crowd left to the desert, I was left alone. Mosa locked me in a small dirty room which I shared with mice. He didn’t allow me to speak with anyone and controlled all my steps. I was kept like a slave in a jail. Very often he forgot about me and I had to stay hungry, without food and any means of communication. Through lie, sweet words and sometimes pressure my husband managed to take all my money. He scammed absolutely everything I had. When there was nothing else to take, he decided to throw me away like a trash. He never treated me like a wife. He didn’t spend a JD on me. No house, no food, nothing.
    All the family knew that there was something wrong, but did noting. No one came to visit me or to ask whether I need anything. It seemed that Mosa waited for my death from starving. Then he would bury the body and sign with relief.
    When Mosa decided to get rid of me, I managed to survive only thanks to the family, who found me. They brought me to their home, gave food and clothing. During 2 weeks the family took care of me. Thanks to them I went to the Tourist Police, wrote a complain on my husband and returned all the money. I had to put him into the jail, but under the pressure of the family I agreed not to do it. I was very sick and tired. The only wish I had was to return the money and to go back to my home.
    Wadi Rum is the worst place you can choose to come. People lie here and treat foreigners very badly. The last time scamming is growing so rapidly in this region. In the police I was told that my case unfortunately was not the first one in Wadi Rum.
    My husband treated me so badly. He lied to me from the very first day I know him. He made me leave my job and country. He made me take Islam. He organized a fake wedding in the village to make me believe that I will stay for life with him. After he scammed me for 4100 JD, I was needed no more. He threw me away like a trash. Only thanks to my complain that I wrote in the Tourist Police, I managed to return all the money and finally to come back to my country.
    Sorry to say, but Wadi Rum, like Petra, has become a platform for scamming. People forgot their real values. Traditions and religion are dying here. Money has taken their place.


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