Friday, 9 January 2015

A trip to Petra

I love to cross things off a list, so getting to Petra this week was a huge achievement for my year and my bucket list. I started off super brave (by my standards) by driving the first leg of the journey. This was scary for several reasons: 

1) I have only ever driven in the UK and UAE and Jordan's roads were unlike those that I'm accustomed to, to say the least. 

2) The hire car was automatic, and I'm strictly a manual girl. I braved the car guys' smirks as they explained I had to 'put the left foot away completely', and watched me jerk my way out onto the road. 

3) It seems I am yet to learn the difference between a police man waving me over to the side of the road and one waving me to carry on. The latter looked amused. The former grilled me on the fact that I have a UAE driving license but do not speak arabic. Only the magic words "I come from Manchester" seemed to help me in this scenario. 

4) Jordan (at least the part of it that I saw) is full of stray dogs and I was terrified that I would hit one and accidentally add to the range of roadkill on the journey. Luckily, this did not happen. 

Having got all my personal challenges out of the way early on, I was then free to enjoy myself. 

My Dad, armed with a guide-book, made an awesome tour guide and we spent two wonderful, if somewhat chilly days exploring the tombs, steps, canyons and caves of Petra. The sights were so plentiful that after a while we didn't even notice an ancient rock carving unless with was a particularly good example. 

I must admit that the photography in Petra was a bit daunting. So much to point my camera at, so much magic to try to capture. There were many interesting faces to admire during this trip, but I often felt that every click was a missed opportunity. I guess these decisions about what to capture and what to let go are part of understanding who I am as a photographer. It was certainly a learning opportunity for me to reflect on these things.  

I'll say one thing without shame. If you're going to own a selfie pole, this is the place to use it - for sure. 

Anyway, this trip has totally kickstarted January with a lust for adventure, so I feel it could be an expensive year for travel. But if we say it is all in the cause of the bucket list, it doesn't quite seem so bad.

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