Taking Maureen to the Middle East travel blog

Lunch of mansuf with Um Basem and family


Thursday 15th October

The sheer joy of being able to sleep a little longer this morning after 5 gruelling weeks of early mornings and being on the road.

Had a leisurely breakfast at the hotel and then enquired at front desk if the Jordan Museum open so we could go visit the Dead Sea Scrolls held there. At first they said yes but because it is the New Year Holiday day for Muslims I asked the girl to ring the museum and sure enough they weren’t answering so guess we are out of luck this time

Basem was visiting the hospital this morning to try to get some answers about Um Basem’s condition so just messaged him that we were free whenever he was.

He called about 1pm that he had not had much success finding out anything as everything in the hospital closed for the holiday. Only thing they did say was that the biopsy results not back. Very frustrating for him as he has to get back to Perth and his business but doesn’t want to until there is some treatment plan in place for Um Basem.

He came and picked us up from hotel and we went back over to Diana’s apartment where she was cooking us up a huge platter of Mansuf – a traditional Bedouin dish of lamb, toasted almonds on a bed of rice and served with a liquid yoghurt made from dried salty cheese which is liquefied again, drained and re rinsed several times then eventually turned into a thin yoghurt sauce. Of course we had the left over kubbeh from last night as well. Maureen seemed to thoroughly enjoy the meal as we all did, but had to resist the insisting from all the family to eat more and more. Don’t know where they put it all but certainly doesn’t fit into our western stomachs the same way. It was beautiful. Lina produced a little baggie each and one for each of the girls back home with a small gift from her store from Um Basem.

The time just flew by as we all chatted and Um Basem seemed so happy. Unfortunately, we had to be back at the hotel by 5.15 as our ride to the airport was collecting us then. He was waiting by the time we got back there and said bye to Lina and Basem with the hope that he has better luck on Saturday morning when he will try to see the specialist treating Um Basem to find out the real situation and whether or not she should undergo chemotherapy. Very hard situation here as the doctors don’t seem to want to tell anything to a patient or family for fear of worrying them too much. The have just said she needs to see the chemo doctor next week. Basem just wants to find out whether or not it is going to be of any benefit or if the outcome will be the same anyow.

Took around 45 minutes and we were back at Queen Alia Airport ready for our first class flight to Doha Qatar. Don’t know how Megzy managed to get that but we were up the front end of the plane with all the wealthy Arabic passengers enjoying the first class service of Qatar.

Two hours later touched down in Doha, retrieved all our luggage and took a cab to the City Centre and our hotel for the next two nights. It was around 1am and we were all just exhausted. Gave us one room but it wasn’t big enough to fit a third bed in so they had to move us again which made it well after 1.30am before we could hit the bed. So tired!!!!

Goodnight All.

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