Today was our first full day in Jordan, guests of the Jordan Tourism Board and Royal Jordanian Airlines.
Having wrestled with sleeplessness till daybreak, I watched the sun rise over a city of cinder blocks and minarets, marvelling at the landscape taking shape before my eyes.
After breakfast, we set out for a day of pilgrimage, stopping first by the Jabbok River.
I had missed, in many readings of the passage, that the river where Jacob wrestled with the angel of the Lord (or whomever) till dawn is described as shallow. In fact, it looked little more than a slight, storm-swollen stream; he should have expected to cross it with ease. Much more difficult was the terrain either side: steep banks and long, scrubby hills.
But Jacob was never one to do things the easy way. He wrestled all night, unable to cross the narrow, shallow river that divided him now for his whole family and household, not only the twin he had come to petition for peace.
In my sleep-deprived state, I am struggling to find the meaning in standing this morning in the cool, shallow water, rooted to the spot and unable to cross to the other side because of flowing waters, the waiting buses, watching strangers and friends.
A strange light was captured in the camera, and we joked about angels, as we were driven away.