You never know when you’ll run into people who make you feel welcome. @theawkwardtraveller went to Jordan and got more than she expected. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ “When you travel, especially as a black woman, you almost expect to look like an outsider. If you aren't traveling to a country in the Afro Diaspora, you can almost predict being stared at or someone asking about your hair. It's basically a given. However, during my most recent trip to Jordan, that didn't happen at all. Jordan itself is just hours from the continent of Africa, and Jordanians come in all shapes, shades, and sizes. Many people outside of the Middle East might think that being Black or Arab is mutually exclusive, but they're not. Afro-Jordanians are FROM the Jordan Valley, as far back as they can trace their ancestry. The fact that I can see people in the community that literally look LIKE ME was incredibly heartwarming and inspiring. I stayed at a desert camp, Captain's Camp, and every night there was a huge feast for the guests. I was in Jordan, but suddenly I was also transported back to my grandmother's house, whenever it was someone's birthday. The camp chefs became the uncles I grew up with, who would laugh and joke about which one of them had the best BBQ. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 'Do you speak Arabic?' One of the staff asked, offering to wrap a khimar (headscarf) around my head. I shook my head, but he grinned. 'ant eayila,' he translated. 'You are family.' ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ And of course, there was dancing, SO MUCH DANCING. Even after solemnly swearing I can't dance (really, I can't!), my new friends looped their arms under mine and carried me into the dance circle. I learned traditional dances from the region, but we all put our own swagger into the steps. I fell into my bed, exhausted, but with a smile. I didn't expect to feel at home in Jordan. I didn't expect to see myself in the locals. Yet there I was, quads burning from dropping it low and the impending food coma lulling me to sleep under the stars. I didn't expect to close my eyes and feel like I belonged. But travel has a way of reminding you to expect the unexpected. #blackhistorymonth"