For example, we had a home-cooked meal in the home of an older couple who lives on Kibbutz. It was a compelling afternoon because the couple explained to us that they had tragically lost two sons, one at the age of 19 and the other at the age of 22. One of the sons had been killed while serving in the army and the other in a tragic accident. The couple now dedicates their lives to sending underprivileged children to music camp. Another unique experience we enjoyed was in Petra. Instead of going out to a restaurant, Susan arranged for us participate in a cooking class at the Petra Kitchen. It was fabulous experience and we had a fantastic time. We met people from Canada, Australia, Holland, and Switzerland. Furthermore, Susan also arranged for a private jeep tour of the Wadi Rum and a private lunch in a Bedouin tent.
Susan also arranged the most amazing tour guide for us in Israel. We have had many other private tour guides over the years however, Lior was by far the best tour guide ever. I can't say enough about him. Lior went above and beyond what anyone could or would expect of even a family member. My daughter who is a college student is staying in Israel this summer for an internship at Tel Aviv University. When we arrived in Israel, her previously arranged sublet apartment with three other college students fell through. Lior immediately got on the phone and made several telephone calls, traveled to Tel Aviv University and made arrangements for my daughter and the three other college students. Susan and Lior have both checked on my daughter since I have returned to the U.S. In addition, Lior was amazingly knowledgeable about so many subject matters. Furthermore, as he learned more about us, he added places that were "off the beaten path" or places that fourth or fifth time visitors would go to -- which was fantastic and very much appreciated.
Our tour guide in Jordan was also excellent. Not only was he very knowledgeable, but also very caring. My son was not feeling well in the morning we were in Petra, so he wanted to rest in the hotel. Loai arranged for the hotel to check on him and Loai also checked on him several times himself. Because my son missed parts of Petra, Loai rearranged our schedule and took us to Little Petra, so my son would be able to see some of the sights.
Finally, one of the best parts of the trip was the arrival and departure airport VIP arrangement with the airport facilitators, as well as all of the transfers throughout our trip. The VIP arrival and departure airport VIP arrangement was absolutely amazing. The security lines were incredibly long and we were personally escorted as though we were truly VIPs and were through in less than 30 minutes --all I can say is this is what it must feel like to be Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice or Angelina Jolie.