After taking a photo my first morning in Petra, I did as all photographers should—I sought out the young Bedouin in the photo so to give him a copy.  As a result, word spread.  I took more portraits and shared them.
Petra, the crown jewel amongst Jordan’s great archeological treasures, was once the flourishing capital of the Nabateaens, a kingdom made up of great nomadic traders.  They built vibrant trade routes connecting the Mediterranean and Arabian Seas, engineered water conduit systems in a desert landscape, and developed the singular rock-cut architecture that is now heralded one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.  Then calamity struck—an earthquake—and the Romans Empire took over.  The Nabateaen kingdom faded and Petra disappeared.  Rediscovered in 1812, Petra has been described by UNESCO as “one of the most precious cultural properties of man’s cultural heritage.” 
There are many photos of the Siq, Monastery, and other High Places, but few of the Bedouin who make Petra possible.
This is the young man whose photo I took my first morning in Petra.  He was angling for me to purchase a ride, but I wanted to make my way up the High Places on foot.  As he circled me, I took his picture.  The next day, I found him again in a huddle with his Bedouin cousins.  I shared over mobile phones the photo.  Word spread.
This is the young man whose photo I took my first morning in Petra. He was angling for me to purchase a ride, but I wanted to make my way up the High Places on foot. As he circled me, I took his picture. The next day, I found him again in a huddle with his Bedouin cousins. I shared over mobile phones the photo. Word spread.
Before I met the young Bedouin that first morning in Petra, I caught his cousin and friends riding the donkeys hard near the Siq. When the others saw this photo, one man made a ruckus. Another translated: "He didn't know his cousin smoked."
Before I met the young Bedouin that first morning in Petra, I caught his cousin and friends riding the donkeys hard near the Siq. When the others saw this photo, one man made a ruckus. Another translated: "He didn't know his cousin smoked."
The Bedouins carry Petra visitors up to the High Places, but more often they haul the objects of trade.  Sodas, tea, headscarves, beads.  A woman starts the first steps up the mountain with her roll of wares.
The Bedouins carry Petra visitors up to the High Places, but more often they haul the objects of trade. Sodas, tea, headscarves, beads. A woman starts the first steps up the mountain with her roll of wares.
Coming down from mountain top, a Bedouin stops in surprise.  We've been trying for days to arrange a time for a portrait.  Nothing could be better than catching him on the relaxing descent of work.
Coming down from mountain top, a Bedouin stops in surprise. We've been trying for days to arrange a time for a portrait. Nothing could be better than catching him on the relaxing descent of work.
The 800-step path up to the Monastery is marked by natural wonders, like the conch of the sea in pink rock face.
The 800-step path up to the Monastery is marked by natural wonders, like the conch of the sea in pink rock face.
The Monastery is one of Petra's highest architectural achievements.  To reach it, the pilgrim must climb over eight hundred rock-cut steps up a mountain—or be carried on the back of donkeys by the Bedouin.  In the earliest hours of morning, it glows in the reflection of soft light hitting the rose-colored sand.  No one is present.  Even the wind has vanished.
The Monastery is one of Petra's highest architectural achievements.  To reach it, the pilgrim must climb over eight hundred rock-cut steps up a mountain—or be carried on the back of donkeys by the Bedouin.  In the earliest hours of morning, it glows in the reflection of soft light hitting the rose-colored sand.  No one is present.  Even the wind has vanished.
Petra's other sacred High Places see few visitors the morning light.
Petra's other sacred High Places see few visitors the morning light.
In the earliest hours of morning, only the carpet waits, but later, tea will be served at the ledge overlooking the wadis.
In the earliest hours of morning, only the carpet waits, but later, tea will be served at the ledge overlooking the wadis.
If one scrambles up the rock face and jumps a couple ravines, the first morning light can be caught from above as it shines into the Siq.
If one scrambles up the rock face and jumps a couple ravines, the first morning light can be caught from above as it shines into the Siq.
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