Anticipation is key.

Anticipation is a strange thing, it can enhance an experience exponentially but too much of it can ruin it completely. End of last year I posted on my Facebook Page that one of my travel top 10s had been realised: a trip to the ancient city of Petra in the Kingdom of Jordan. 

Ever since the first Indiana Jones film I've been fascinated with the place. It looked so fantastically beautiful, I so wanted to go see it in real life.

Wanting to go to see a place because you've seen it in a film can get you're expectations up too high rather easily. I remember being rather disappointed seeing the Eiffel Tower for the first time, it was just so 'exactly as I had imaged it to be', so 'perfectly precisely as pictured on postcards'. 

The great thing, in my opinion, about the visit to Petra (which in it's own way is also exactly as portrayed in photos, not so much as in the Indiana Jones film) is the route to one the main attractions 'The Library'. The route leads the visitor through a meandering gorge with stone walls as high as you can see. The feeling of not knowing when you'll be eye to eye with the monumental building really builds up positive anticipation; it could be around this corner, or perhaps the next.

And when you finally get your first glimpse of the building, the contrast in lighting, makes it even more dramatic. At that moment you can feel your heart beat that little bit faster. Wanting to walk a bit faster and slower at the same time. I imagine a bit like Madama Butterfly, in the opera, when she imagines seeing, in the distance the ship carrying her love Mr. Pinkerton.

While still in the gorge, the Library doesn't look that large, but once you're outside the gorge that lead you to the open space and you're standing there in front of it, you can only feel awe!

What a majestical experience it was sharing it with my love!

jwamsterdam