A Bedouin Boy Leads The Way
My friends and I had been told of a mineral spring, located off of the Colonnaded Street in Petra, where we could go to cool off. So without thinking twice, we began following an empty side street away from the tourist-populated sites, and ended up on an unmarked path that took us straight into the mountains. Tiny pink wildflowers bloomed on all sides, and the city's infamous rose-colored cliffs were a wonder to look at.
But in ten minutes, we were thoroughly lost.
Luckily, a 13-year-old Bedouin boy, sitting in the shade while his donkey grazed, offered to take us to the spring. Unable to speak much English—and chain smoking the whole time—the boy led us on a silent two-hour trek through dense thickets, over streams and narrow ditches, under scary-looking barbed wire fences, and across some rather precarious bare rock faces that almost had me tumbling into the abyss.
But finally, after much perseverance, and more than a few scratches and scrapes, we reached a medium-size pool wedged in between two vertical cliffs. Our guide remained seated, but we immediately stripped off our clothes and slipped into the cool, neon green water, which felt even more refreshing after the haul.
I took this shot of the boy, whose name we never got, taking a break as we dried off in the sun. He never asked for any money, didn't seem to care who we were or where we were from, and yet managed to offer what was probably the most enjoyable experience I had in all of Jordan.