Wednesday, November 14, 2007


So, we've been in Amman for a couple of weeks. Ann is settling into her job, and I am getting my office situation. The Iraqi refugees have added somewhere from 1-10 billion dollars to the economy here. There are poor and rich refugees from Iraq, and many of the rich ones are here because they got rich helping the US. I was just reading this other very interesting account of the arrival of Iraqis here and will just provide the link so I don't have to repeat anything.

You can look across from the Dead Sea in Jordan and See Israel. They call it Lot's Lake, here. The west bank. From the road:

Two different guys speaking arabic rubbed slime on my back. One guy asked me if I knew why this was the lowest point on earth. "Is it because this Sea and this valley sits on the crevice between the Arab and African plates, and they are pulling apart, creating the Great Rift which extends 3000 miles to the south all the way down to Tanzania?"

"No," he said, "Wrong wrong wrong wrong. Nothing to do with geography! It is because the people turned away from God for 500 years, and they invented being gay, and the angels came and told them to stop and when they didn't Gabriel lifted up the land that Sodom was on and turned it upside down."

This from a guy who came up to me with a gob of greasy mud in the Dead Sea and started rubbing it on my back., purring "this will make you skin like a six month old baby!" And the mud is very effective. Ann tried it out first.

But it still doesn't make sense to me that if you turn something upside down, it gets lower. Take a shovel, stab some dirt, turn it upside down in the same spot, you have a high spot. But if you think that way you confuse reason with theology. Observable fact with legend. And you might begin to confuse the promised land with a desert.

I remember going to the great salt lake. It was supposedly pretty floaty. The Dead Sea is hyper floaty. We were floating in six inches of water, here:

The music that we hear everywhere is Lionel Richie (worshipped), Bryan Adams, and Celine Dion. Cheese factor generally high.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are a marvelous philosopher!! Brave too getting ann to try the mudpack first!. Your writing is so fine....could read your stories forever. Love you, Mom