Dhiban Excavation and Development Project


Life and work from a tell site in Jordan

Jordan & America

Courtney, on differences between Jordan and America:

America > Jordan

1.    Water.
2.    Toilet seats you can sit upon.
3.    Something more akin to gender equality.
4.    Going out without the nigh necessity of male accompaniment.
5.    Water.
6.    Drinking water from the tap.
7.    Screens on windows.
8.    No dust to make my camera/other electronics/contacts cranky.
9.    No concrete homes with random rebar haphazardly sticking about.
10.    Water.
11.    Being able to let the shower water run on your skin.
12.    Condiments. Ketchup. Mustard. Miracle whip.
13.    More trees/plant life. I miss shady maples.
14.    Ice cubes that are completely safe.
15.    Water.

Jordan > America

1. Manners in the area of overwhelming hospitality. Often if you walk into a shop and make conversation with the owner, in about 20 minutes you’ll be sitting down, having tea and biscuits with him/her. Jordanians hardly ever get to their intended destinations in a timely manner as they are constantly being invited to tea while walking down the street.
2. The wonderful fact that you can spill water here and not concern yourself with wasting paper towels or just time/effort to clean it up. When you return in 20-30 minutes, the water will have evaporated completely.
3. Mold literally cannot live here. Not in Sarah’s soap container, and not in my dirty/wet clothes that I sometimes leave in piles.
4. Sunsets/Sunrises. Jordanian sunsets over are just beyond beautiful. Sorry Midwest, Jordan has trumped you in this department.
5. The bee/wasp population in Jordan is significantly less than that in America. This pleases Alan and myself.
6. Non-existent humidity.
7. Jordanian desserts (delicious!) and the strange, flat, sort of pita-like bread we purchase fresh and eat daily.
8. Beautiful archaeology. Beautiful mosaics, beautiful art. A rich history that spans centuries and resides alongside the modern. Refreshingly different from home.


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