The UNHCR can do about as little for the 750,000 Iraqi's in Jordan (bringing the country's population to about 6.5 million). And since they can't work, many find that they have to go back home. Of course some people take it as a good sign.
After being in South Africa, where you're generally better off if you never have to talk to the police, Jordan is refreshing in that the police, like most people, are ridiculously nice to westerners. I was trying to find a restaurant the other day, and so I asked a cop. He ignored my question, and insisted that we become friends. We talked, in a mix of my extremely broken arabic and his mostly broken english, about all the important things - where we were from, if we're married, what we like to do for fun, etc. - for a good 15 minutes, before I realized that I was late, and again brought up the subject of the restaurant. After asking a few people, he took my arm, as friends do, and lead me there, where we exchanged phone numbers and I promised to call him.
In the interest of keeping this a non-travel blog, I won't ramble at great length about Syria, but I will mention a few things.
- We waited at the border for almost 10 hours. Which gave us lots of time to do fun things like look at this sign:
- The people are ridiculously friendly. Well, to foreigners. Although probably not to Iraqis.
- Syrian men hold hands. Full-on, fingers intertwined, holding hands. It's amusing, until some does tries it with you, and then it's a little weird. They're very touchy everywhere, even in the baths, where friends wash each other. I saw one guy slap his friend's ass to tell him he was done scrubbing.