Petra was incredible. Emma and I only spent four hours there; I could spend a week to thoroughly understand it, and a month to just feel it.
It’s a funny dichotomy between an old stillness and tourist hawking. These ancient buildings carved out of primeval cliffs watch tour guides huckster, “Best tour, special price, just for you!”, venders bartering souvenirs, and shrieking school groups. It feels a little sacrilegious.
I’ve been at a loss on how to write about Petra. I was surprised by how much it moved me. Unimaginably ancient history, beautiful feats of carving and architecture, impressive vistas: it’s exactly these things that I left to see. I hope Emma’s pictures will suffice where my words fail me.
It’s easy to pass by them, but on the way are carvings and stairs and caves. It boggles my mind that this used to be someone’s home: Emerging from between the cliffs, you come upon the Treasury, the most famous and best preserved structure in Petra: Stairs lead above the main square to the Monastery, and cliffs from which you look down on Petra from above: