Cos I’m Black and I’m Free!
I want to share a secret with you. My favourite place on earth.
I revisited my Babylonian palace aka Dead Sea Kempinski Ishtar resort. Tucked away in the worlds most hypersaline lake (10 times saltier than the ocean). Being cabin crew our days are constantly surrounded by the needs and desires of hundreds/thousands of people on a weekly basis. And we are not even celebrities. So we don’t have an entourage to attend to our needs in between takes. One of the perks of being a professional avatar is the incredible travel benefits e.g paying only 10% to getaway to pretty much any destination. Also living in Dubai means that all middle eastern destinations are a stone throw away.
I had a few days off as I was on leave, furthermore I had battled a chest infection for about 2 weeks and just needed to getaway. I had also read up on the unique geographical facts about the dead sea and the physiological benefits that people had attained by visiting this place, from King David to Herod the great. Well I figured if it was their favourite hideaway then it is definitely good enough for me. The dead sea is fringed by Jordan to the east, and Israel and the West bank to the right. The place is a geographical gem, being the lowest place of elevation on earth (422 mts below sea level) meaning it has the highest concentration of oxygen and atmospheric pressure (kind of like a natural hyperbaric chamber). If you know anything about being cabin crew, any extra oxygen and atmospheric pressure is welcomed as we are somewhat deprived living inside a mothership above the earths atmosphere most of the times LOL. Being in Jordan at the Dead sea, you can’t escape the sense of being at the front row of a dramatic stage, for the rich ancient biblical history where moses stood on Mount Nebo to finally view the promised land which took place just behind, and also the very colourful political drama that has unfolded across the waters on the West bank for thousands of years to this very day.
Anyways getting back to my holiday, I have to tell you about the Kempinski resort, it is just simply breathe taking, yes I agree the Babylonian style resort is palatial and oozes with luxury, priding itself on the plantation of Olive trees on the resort premises which are hundreds of years old. But in defense, I must say that they still achieve a sense of coziness, the Ishtar resort shies away from ostentatious decadence. Although your baggage and taxi gets searched and scanned by armed security, once your inside, the staff from the bell boy to the maids treat and welcome you like royalty in residence. Being offered chilled moist towels and selections of smoothies as soon as your done donning on your belt as you come through the metal detectors in the grand foyer. Working as a professional in the service industry we all talk about how hard it is to come across people who have nailed the art of service. Those who truly embody a servant heart and preempt the needs and desires of the guest even unbeknownst to the visiting person. This is something you will recognise immediately as everyone calls you by your last name. It’s kind of scary but there is much to learn here. All of you in the service trade need to visit the Kempinski Dead Sea. By the way out of all the hotels I have stayed, Ishtar Kempinski is the only place that will bid you good night in a card every night with the next days temperature and a bag of complimentary sea salt.
Anyways long story short I spent my days wrapped in mud or bobbing in the thick almost gelatinous texture of the dead sea being embalmed constantly by the healing waters and atmosphere. I had my trusty Moleskine journal to pour my mind and prayers upon, also a bevy of my fave books to reread and reflect upon, which was a spiritually and physically rejuvenating time in solitude. People seem to fear the word ‘Solitude,’ but embracing it proved to be liberating and something we all need to do more often. There was a moment when I wadded out past the safety floats marking the boundaries of the hotel where it was just me, the dead sea and the cliff faces on the other side knowing that I was the only living creature in the water at that point in front of me was a surreal moment. By the way I forgot to mention that after one day at the Dead sea my chunderous chest coughs and sinusitis just disappeared! MY 3 days there were spent basking in the glorious sun under the beach umbrella ella ella, reading, writing, listening to my tunes, praying, eating, embalmed copious amounts of times with mud, rinsed in the dead sea, watching the sun set over Israel, catching stars with my fingers on the palatial decks and having the most restorative sleep on the planet.
Emirates airlines flies there twice daily to Amman and it is a scenic 45 min taxi drive to paradise. By the way the service on Emirates was top nosh! and here is a link to the Dead Sea Kempinski Ishtar website, hit it up whilst they have summer specials. http://www.kempinski.com/en/deadsea/Pages/Welcome.aspx
p.s I still have to put up photos and a write up for my first trip to Jordan which included Petra, that’s another chapter in itself, enjoy the pics that I captured on my time of solitude!