May 28, 2010

Day...Five: Jerusalem!

Why does Day 5 feel like Day 50? I feel like I've been here forever. It's weird to think that I still have over 2 more weeks here in this beautiful, deserty land. And just to clarify, I'm not complaining, only stating.

[This picture of the Sea of Galilee was taken from my hotel balcony at 6 AM]

Last night was our last night in Tiberius. Which I was OK with, secretly hoping that the next hotel would offer some free internet of some sort. I am seriously sad to admit how deprived I feel without the internet. My addiction is actually sad. I believe it's because when I'm away from home, the internet is where my family is. It's what I use to contact them, and to make sure that they're still alive. Therefore, when I'm gone, the internet means the world to me.
So we had to pack up all our suitcases, load them on the bus, and say goodbye to Tiberius forever.
"Bye..." I said.
Our first stop was Bet She'an National Park. This was sooo cool. I'm talkin' ancient ruins of an ancient Roman city build by Harod himself. Inside this old city was an large amphitheater. I must say that I'm pretty impressed with the architecture of it all. I mean, how smart were they to take advantage of sound and it's carrying capabilities? No need for microphones, you know? Back then in 5 B.C you could actually attend a concert without having your eardrums blasted out by those large speakers that are somehow always in your line of vision. Somehow. Always.
[Nice theatre, eh?]

[I loved the broken pillars]

[My friend Irwin on the ancient latrines!! (Toilets)]

[They're not as comfy as good ol' porcelain, but what can you do?]

Back on the bus, still on our way to Jerusalem, we drove parallel to fences of the Israel and Jordan border. The security measures here go to great lengths; there are two sets of electric fences, watch towers, soldiers, and then running next to the fence is a wide strip of white powder (looks like a dirt road), which is used to grab your permanent footprints. Clever!!
[See the white strip?]

[We saw herds and herds of sheep]

We then stopped at this touristy gas station/restaurant venue near Jericho. (by the way, Jericho was nothing special...which is why we didn't stop...ha) Here I ate a schnitzel pita, took pictures of camels, and ran into some Israeli soldiers. One of my goals on this trip was to take a photo with the soldiers, so all I need to say right now is: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

[Just chillin']
[That's one happy camel]
[My Schnitzel Pita! Mmm...good!]

[Chocolate pudding, Israeli style]

[A Bedouin Shepherd settlement]
When we arrived in Jerusalem, everyone on the bus whipped out there cameras just at the mere glimpse of the Dome of The Rock, including me. I knew absolutely nothing about this golden dome; all I knew was that it's Jerusalem's signature monument. So I figured that it's good enough to take lousy bad quality photos of. At the city viewpoint near the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a street vendor guy selling 30 postcards for $1 walked right up to me, face to face, and said in a heavy accent. "you...have beautiful eyes." Since I never ever get compliments on my eyes I try not to take these things to heart, or let my head grow too big. "How nice" I thought. A few seconds later, another street vendor selling scarves came up to Charmaine and asked if she was selling me. -cue the jaw drop- He stated proudly: "I'll buy her for 8000 shekels!" Now, if I do my math right, that's only $2,253 in Canadian currency. Really, sir? Is that all I am worth to you? Ouch.

[This is how people park on the Sabbath. EVERY car has scratches and bumper marks on it. Gee, I wonder why.]

We then went to the Tomb of David (not much to explain here), and then to a dungeon on Mount Zion. It's said that this was the dungeon Jesus was put inside after praying at the Garden of Gesthame and before he was thrown under Pilot's authority. I'm not gonna lie, it kind of hit me hard; this dungeon had an eerie feeling.

[Why is there a guitar at the Tomb of David?]


[Dungeon details]

[I'm sure Jesus didn't have his own pulpit in there though...]

Our last stop of the day was at an Olive Wood store. Anything olive is huge in Israel, which is something I think I once said before. So you can only imagine how crazy Canadians get when they enter such a place. To be honest, I did a walk through, noted the $16,000 massive nativity set that was almost as big as me, then walked out. I feel like I should've bought something. But sometimes I can only imagine these things collecting dust at home, being admired and oo'ed at for an unfortunate short amount of time. I've realized that when it comes to souvenirs, I'm a very practical shopper; I buy things that you can use on a day to day basis like purses, jewelry, and lotions. (sounds pretty girly actually...)
[Busy Jerusalem]

[I love seeing signs like this]
After a super long day, we arrived at our huge Grand Court hotel in Jerusalem. Stepping off the bus, Charmaine and I noticed a little outdoor shop at the hotel right next to ours. We figured that Jerusalem can't be as bad as Tiberius was for it's creepy stalkers, so we decided to take the 3 second trek. Halfway through, we realized it was the gift shop for the other hotel and were like "that's lame!" so we turned around to find this man coming perpendicular to us. He was...let's just say...not normal. I mean, how normal can you be considered when having a pink tongue laying limp down to your chin while making strange humming sounds. This guy was honesty an inch from me. No, try centimeter. He walked pretty fast for his age. Needless to say, Charmaine and I booked it to our hotel; safe and sound. I couldn't believe that spending only 3 seconds outside in Jerusalem was enough time to be creeped. Why??
Before becoming a gluttonous monster at dinner that night, a bunch of us lounged out by the pool under the afternoon sun. There's no better way to wind-down after a day like today.


  1. Nice Galilee picture.
    It's flocks not heards....I mean herds.
    Good thing you said they were toilets ... I thought they were just innovative seats for resting in a shady spot...
    The pita does look scrumptious.
    Please don't quit with this blogging of your trip it!

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. The 'queen of the night' looks pretty realistic. That could really be you. You're so comical.

  4. hahaha, gluttonous monster!!! that made me laugh! I love your pictures and the comments. The sabbath parking made me laugh too. I am so jealous of your trip! I remember thinking when I was in Rome how smart these people were in their architecture too!! It's crazy how they figured it all out!!
    Were they Israeli soldiers?
    That camel does look pretty pumped.
    Why isn't krissi commenting on your blog? She's usually the first!

    Love you!!!!! Great posts!!!!

  5. ps: I love that first picture of the fog and the boat! I didn't think you took that! Very VERY cool picture!!!!

  6. why did you delete mom's second comment? now i'm curious. did you poop in the latrine? remember on robin hood men in tights? the evil witches name is latrine.. it used to be s*** house but she changed it. hahahaha..

    i'd buy you for $1000.

    i've been busy, thats why i haven't commented.