This is Not Goodbye

Under quarantine, I have had new adventures. In my first post, I said that it was going to be a struggle to fall in love with the city when I could no longer see it. This was true, but I was still able to see the city, just in a different way. Amman might no longer be an open world to me, but the city was now framed by my balcony, my windowpanes and my terrace. Amman is now the walk I take to Paris Square, where benches and statues sit in the center of a no-longer-bustling hub of the city. The people are still just as bright, cheery and full of life as they were before, but there are just fewer people around now. I am learning that these two sides of Amman are equally lovable and, from the bottom of my heart, I am thankful that I will have this summer to experience more of this new Amman.

Next week, the government will allow restaurants and cafes to open, though still with precautions in place to ward off COVID-19 infections. For the past few weeks, my internship’s office has been open and I have been in and out of the office just like before quarantine started. As life begins to transition into some sense of normalcy, I wonder if I’ll miss this calm Amman. Of course, I know I won’t miss it for the first few weeks. The few nights that the government has allowed late curfews have made this city feel most like the Amman I remember on my arrival, pre-lockdown. Once the government allows those nights to come back full-time, I will probably be excited and not think twice about "calm Amman". However, I have a feeling that in the future, after many days and nights of Amman going back to “normal,” I would miss the quiet--the lack of traffic, the muted stores, the lone people standing in the city's squares and standing outside of stores.