Monday, April 9, 2012

The rest of Israel

I am back in Poti after a whirlwind tour of Israel.
After the family filled weekend (the weekend in Israel is Friday and Saturday), I went to Jerusalem and stayed with one of Adi's friends. I wandered through the Old City of Jerusalem and had an amazing time. I got lost so many times, it was kinda amazing. I was trying to get from the Jaffa Gate to the Western Wall and kept on finding myself looped back to the Christian and Armenian Quarters... I finally found the Wall and saw the Temple Mount. I had done a project in a Tech Theater class involving designing and building a set for a play of our choosing. I chose Lysistrata, a Greek play about the woman going on strike until the wars end. In my version of the play, the war the women want ended is the conflict between Israel and Palestine and the temple they lock themselves in to keep the men away was the Temple Mount. I poured over pictures and then built a miniature Temple out of Balsa wood. After so much pain to paint the mosaic on my mini, it was something else entirely to see it in person and think about the work it took to create such an amazing building.

After all the adventures of the Old City, I decided the next day to see some dead land. And by that I mean the desert next to the craziest body of water in the world. When they say you can float in the dead sea, that is not the weirdest part! Or maybe that was the part I was expecting so it wasn't so unusual. What got me was the water itself. It has this slick oily feeling that was just insane! Also nuts, if you reached down to grab some sand while in the water (in the shallow end, since you do NOT put your head in this water... your eyes would burn for days!) you bring up these huge things of salt. Then rub it in all over and exfoliate. Not too hard, or you will irritate your skin and then you need to get OUT of the water.
That night, I headed back to Tel Aviv to prepare for an Interview for my job last year with the Wexler Oral History Project of the Yiddish Book Center. I did the whole thing in Yiddish with a wonderful Yiddish Poet, and except for the minor glitches, it was a great interview. I spent the afternoon with my second cousin once removed Irit (Gilli's mother) and we went for a walk on the Harbor.

And I have a bit of advice for anyone who is going to go to the beach in Tel Aviv... That sun is STRONG. One coat of sunscreen will not last you the day, especially if you fall asleep lying on the beach...

Luckily for me (at the time), I did not have an idea of how sunburned I was and managed to have a great day shopping in the Shuk and at the crafts fair. I did get myself a nice sun hat to protect myself from the sun here in Georgia, because I have not yet seen any sign of sunscreen in the stores.
Now that I am back in Poti, it is actually Easter vacation. Eastern Orthodox's Easter is this coming Sunday. I realized that, being in the old city last Sunday and seeing all the people with palm leaves, and being in Georgia yesterday for their Palm Sunday, I have seen the celebrations twice. Anyway, I need to find something to do with this vacation after my last vacation. Probably rest... a whole lot...

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