People of Jordan

"You don't speak Arabic?  Why not?"

They weren't smiling.  "Uh, I know uh, shakura, shakrum, what is Thank you?"  
"Shukran,", they say back at me now smiling.  
"Ah shukran, I'm sorry.  I only know a little."  
"Welcome, welcome," and they let us pass by.  

This seems to be a big selling point for Jordanians here for visitors to speak Arabic.  Of the 7 hours of driving we've done so far, we've gone through probably around 15 checkpoints.  They do get annoying and kind of scary, but their surrounding borders are, I'm sure, tough to deal with, so everything is understandable.  

The people of Jordan that we've met along the way have been unbelievably nice.  Mentioned earlier in the post about Ajloun, the people we met in that town couldn't have been nicer.  People seem to find it humorous that we're here visiting from the US.  We don't see a ton of other tourists around like we have in other countries, so I'm not sure if all tourists get the same giggles we do, being from the US, but still everyone says "Welcome" to us, and "Thank you". 

Breanne and I were at dinner the other night and I thought I'd bring up with the server who was of course, super nice, how to say just a basic hello to people.  I feel bad when I roll up to these checkpoints, and the armed soldiers are welcomed with an American Hello.  Of course there are gender rules and formalities, but I would try and say the words he was giving us so I could remember.  Kefir.  "What!  No!" he emphatically replied.  "Never say that! You're saying there is no God, and you'll get shot!"  Breanne's dying laughing.  "Kifak.  Kifak."  "Ok ok, got it, got it."  I'm just going to stick with, Hello.