Today we took a brief break from performing and teaching to visit Petra, an ancient city that has been named one of the new seven Wonders of the World.
We all agreed it was an unforgettable experience. The site dates back to about 400 B.C., when it was originally inhabited by the Nabathean tribe, and then was later inhabited by the Byzantines and Romans. The detail and ingenuity of the construction of the tombs and monasteries were awe-inspiring; it's hard to imagine that our ancestors were able to build something so magnificent and efficient without the help of modern technology and tools. And because so many different peoples had made their homes there throughout history, the architecture is a singular mishmash of styles.
In addition to the man-made structures, the site is full of unique rock formations and deep canyons. In one area, our tour guide explained to us that the rift we were standing in was caused by an earthquake millions of years ago. Erosion had gradually widdled the canyon to its current width. Again, it's pretty wild to contemplate the depth of the history that exists in such a place.
It was a long drive out to the ruins and a long, hot walk to get through them, but I think all the dancers agreed it was worth the trek!
Tomorrow we are headed into Amman for the first time since we arrived. We are all looking forward to being in an urban environment and seeing what the city has to offer.