Downtown Thoughts

It started with a friend craving ka’ak and ended with a fairly long stroll in downtown Amman. Actually, it was Thursday, the weather was nice, we brought the Ka’a, the fried and the cheese and we only needed a place sit and eat. Somehow, Al-saha Al-Hashmiyyeh downtown sounded like a perfect choice, and it was. There were renovations going on so we sat by the ruins near the Roman Amphitheater, which were beautifully lit with warm lights and I realized for the first time how beautiful Amman’s Roman Amphitheater is! I mean, you don’t realize it until you see other amphitheaters which are smaller and less ornate.


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After one delicious meal, which you should try and which I’ve talked about before, we went for a walk, passing  by the numerous flights of stairs, a signature of Amman’s,the cheap looking motels which I suggested we check out but the others told me it was a bad idea since it would be suspicious, wouldn’t look so good! We tried sugar cane juice, which none of us liked but it’s something you have to try. We went the famous shop for pirated DVDs where copyrights and intellectual property can bite the dust. We also passed by Abu Ali book stand where I bought Muahmmad’s Al-Maghout’s book سأخون وطني (I’ll betray my homeland) which I’ve been looking for. Everything around looked original, unique and refreshing in a way, and I thought Downtown was the best hangout on a weekend night, away from the buzz of cafes and the annoying fumes of cigarettes and argeeleh. Yet, there are some things you can’t ignore.

Walking down the street, we would see several people lying down, covered up with blankets or whatever, and asleep. Those people were actually sleeping on the street, and they looked so comfortable with it, like it was their home! They were old people which makes you wonder how did they get  here and whether they have anyone, family children, just anyone! And then you can’t help but wonder: Where’s the Ministry of Social Affairs from all of thi? How hard is it to find a shelter, not a home but a mere shelter, for these people?

You know, many of us miss the winter because we think of it in terms of a warm bed with a good book and the sound of rain drops tapping on the window, but have we ever thought what happens to those who don’t have those luxuries? I don’t mean to sound preachy, but seeing people actually sleeping on the street like it’s nothing out of the ordinary isn’t something I see everyday and it had to stir some incoherent thoughts…

I don’t know what to do or how to help, so if you have any ideas…





2 responses

  1. nice post … i think i’ll do what u dd next weekend to escape from traffix & crowds :)\

    As for Mhmd Ma’3ot book, it has taken me so long til i found, and i’ll make you excited .. its th best book i’v ever read! You’ll feel it as if he’s talking about current time … u’l love it … and i didn’t find something similar after it! do u recomment sth similar?!

  2. wow really? that’s encouraging… thanks!

    I haven’t read it yet so I don’t know what a similar book would be, but in the spirit of this post I’d recommend سيرة مدينة – عبد الرحمن منيف because reading about the history of Amman makes me enjoy those trips even more, and it’s one of my favorite books

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