June 16, 2014

Yalla, bye!

9,5 months of living in Amman. Two suitcases (now four.. ahem). 285 days being away from home. Countless hours of skype conversations. It's been a good year. I've learned so much, not only Arabic - the reason I came here in the first place - but also personally: I went from being the quite shy Belgian girl who didn't know anyone when she came here, and who couldn't understand more than a few sentences of Arabic dialect to a more self-assured multi-lingual (ahem...) woman who isn't afraid to stand up for herself, who can have full conversations with native speakers (and most importantly: tell them off when they're being rude or inappropriate) and who has made friendships for life. I'm so grateful that I got to experience all of this. There have been moments where I was asking myself "what the hell am I doing here" or "is this all worth it" but in the end I can say that it definitely was. Despite the hard times  - when I was missing my loved ones, when Arabic class wasn't going well or when I get catcalled for the 2589635th time - this has been the best year of my life so far. So without further ado, a little recap of the past 9,5 months. Enjoy!

Floated on the Dead Sea

Walked around Amman and played tourist

Visited Petra twice!

Went to Wadi Rum, still my favourite place in Jordan

Ran the Amman 10K in the scorching heat

Saw a lot of sunsets

Experienced the (very rare) snow storm in the Middle East

Went to London for Christmas

Got a visit from my parents around New Year's Eve and impressed them with my Arabic skills

Visited Jerusalem twice

Walked around my beautiful neighbourhood every day

Was reunited with my sister in February

Took my obligatory 'sitting on the edge' picture in Petra

Went thrifting A LOT

Discovered a new, artsy side of Amman

Had loads of food, most of it homemade! #proud

Escaped Amman for a hike in a wadi

Admired the views

Experienced life like the Jordanians do

Went on a last-minute trip to Beirut
And met loads of awesome people!
Inshallah we'll meet again, Jordan!