December 31, 2016
Well, we waved good-bye to Wadi Rum and headed Northwest toward the Dead Sea. We passed by a few more check points, but didn’t get pulled over. At one point, we thought we did, and the policeman looked puzzled. He asked if we spoke Arabic…haha, NO! We went on. The road weaved through mountainous terrain with steep grades. Eventually we reached the Dead Sea. The water was beautiful and across the way we could see Israel. The Dead Sea is the lowest place on earth, 1,412 feet below sea level! It wreaked havoc on our cell phones and Fitbits. My Fitbit Blaze battery usually lasts five days. It was draining in a day with the blue tooth off.
Our hotel, The Holiday Inn Resort Dead Sea, which was the nicest Holiday Inn I’ve ever seen, was located at the north end of the hotel strip. After going through security, we were escorted to our lovely rooms where we dropped our bags. Suman and I went for lunch as we didn’t have many snacks on the drive while Margaret and Syreeta headed toward the sea. Lunch service was slow…definitely the slowest of any place we have been, so by the time Suman and I had made it to the sea, the red flag was flying to indicate the water was too rough to enter. I was surprised to see the caution used for a one foot surf, but so be it.
Margaret and Syreeta were able to get in briefly while the flag flew yellow. Afterward, they covered themselves in mud that was in a bowl by the sea. Suman joined them. I decided to skip this activity. First, with the wind, it was cold out! Second, several people surrounded the mud bowl, and it didn’t seem terribly peaceful to me. I just hoped for a chance to go in the sea in the morning and scoop up some of its magic mud from its bottom then. After our short outing at the sea, we moved to the pool and hot tub. I’m not too fond of hot tubs, so I didn’t last long, but the other girls did.
After sunset, we dressed for dinner. We brought nice dresses all the way from the States to Jordan because we had information that we couldn’t stay at the hotel without going to the New Year’s Eve Party. This apparently applied to the Kempinski Hotel and not ours, but we made the most of it anyway and donned our “formal wear”. We ordered some snacks and drinks in the lounge area of the lobby and afterward, Suman and I went to the steak house, another restaurant at the resort, and celebrated the new year by smoking some double apple sheesha. I think we lasted until 10pm…the latest we stayed up the whole trip!! Happy New Year from our beds…ETB
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