One of the paradoxes of living in a foreign country is that, before long, it starts to feel normal. You realize that human nature is constant, and that life basically consists of the same routines across the world. People go to work, get married and have kids, throw birthday parties, and take their families to the park. Once you get past the Islamic calls to prayer and the occasional flock of sheep milling about in the street, life in Jordan feels pretty normal.
I don’t usually write about the day-to-day stuff of life here, because I take it for granted. Every once in a while, though, I’m reminded how little the average American knows about this part of the world. These reminders often come in the form of questions, like whether or not my wife has to wear a burqa (almost nobody wears a burqa here) or how I cope with the food (it’s amazing) or if I’m afraid I’ll be killed by terrorists (no). I’m shocked by some of the far-right-wing hysteria that I occasionally encounter from people who don’t have the slightest idea about Jordan or the Middle East.
I’ve realized that it’s important to convey something of the day-to-day life here in Jordan. The sensational and explosive aspects of the Middle East are what make the news and feed popular American perception. It’s important that Americans get a glimpse of the other 99% of life here. So with that said, I will be attempting to write more posts about ordinary life in Jordan.