Posted by: crossroads49 | November 6, 2011

Israel, Tours Against The Grain

This is the second of three possible posting that I will make on my time in Israel. In 1993 I soon learned that there is Israel, and then there is Israel, the Israel that most tourists and visitors seldom if ever see, if they do it is the rushed fifty cent tour through the windshield of a tour bus or van. I am not against tour buses or guided tours, they are great for those who need structure. They give you a quick over view of the area, you see a lot. For the price, they can not be beat. However, most of the time you do not see what you want to see. As for me, I don’t like to play follower the leader like little duckies to the pond. Now with that said let me add that if you truly want to see Israel, have a memorable experience, and indulge in the culture and country, the planning should begin before you leave home. All tours to Israel are not the same. It would be a very bad thing if you want to party buck nude on the beach in Tel Aviv and end up on a devout religious tour, or end up on a christian tour with a group who will not consider anything out side of the bible, more importantly you get caught on the wrong side of the fence, in an area that is off  limit, in other words use common sense. I say this because Israel is much more than the land where Jesus, Peter, Paul, and Mary lived. Israel is also where the Romans, Babylonians, and Egyptians ruled, and the crusades of the Knights Templars, and it would be great to step back into history and time. I will say, if you want to get the most bang for the money from a bus tour in Israel, get friendly with the driver and the assigned tour guide and give them a few extra shekels. I am speaking from first hand knowledge. My only bus tour of Israel was with a woman  selected by the Officer in Charge  from our cadre to be the group leader and spokesperson because she was a divinity student and knew the bible back and forth, and spoke fluent biblical Hebrew, but she didn’t know Jack about history. I would have had a miserable tour had it not been for the bus driver and the tour guide who saw that I was very interested in seeing Israel, and was aware of the history of the country, so they did some cool, smooth, shady, and underhanded things to get me a seat in the lead or escort van. You can bet your sweet bippy that this did not go over well with the Commanding Officer, and I was persona non gratis and was in the first, second, and third place on the crap list. The tour bus and van would make a stop for an hour or so , the driver and tour guide would tell the group we will meet at a certain place and time, then me, the tour guide and sometime the van driver would go to some places and sites that were not on the tour itinerary. On our way from Beersheva to Jerusalem the tour bus made a quick loop through Ashdod and Ashkelon, and drove pass Hebron so fast that I almost got whip-lash trying to see the place. Because of the circumstances we did not dare stop in Ashkelon or Ashdod, Hebron was strictly off limit. We made it to the rumored site of the ancient cities of Saddam (Sodom) and Gamora(Gomorrah) on the Dead Sea. Next we drove pass Masada to En Gedi. Then the tour guide said look quick there is Jericho, as we made the turn to Jerusalem via Bethlehem. Because of the prevailing circumstances we could not enter Jericho. We made a stop at Kibbutz Tel Tzora near Jerusalem for refreshment. This is where Samson tomb is, and of course I went looking for it. In the old city of Jerusalem I had a quick tour of the city with the bus driver and tour guide. After our tour we went to a restaurant  owned  by a Palestinian who spoke 21 languages, fluently I might add. He also spoke a little of several other languages. It appeared as if his establishment was known to tourists. It was amazing to hear him speak to his customers in Dutch, German, Flemish, Portuguese, English, or Japanese. He gave us a tray of bread, falafels, tea, orange juice, coffee and tea. While the group was shopping and sightseeing, I was enjoying myself with the locals and tourist from other countries. Sad to say his restaurant is no longer there. After we left Jerusalem we made a stop in Tel Aviv and Jaffa. In Joppa (Jaffa), the divinity student was not aware that Peter worked miracles in the area, or that this was one of the cities of the Jonah and the whale story. With the tour guide I went to the home of Simon the Tanner, a close friend of Peter. We had coffee with an elderly descendant of Simon and gave him a few shekels. We also made a quick 11 mile trip to Lod (Lydda) where Peter was ministering before he arrived in Jaffa to the home of Simon. On our way to Nazareth we did the windshield tour of Cana, where Jesus turned water into wine. I took  a quick walk through Cana. I saw the church of the wedding. I also saw one of those water pitcher’s or jars that Jesus waved his hand over and turned the water into wine. Looking at the size of that jar, I said to myself, whoa baby for the size of that jar, I tell you, I would have hated to have been the water boy. If that jar was over flowing with wine, there was some serious hanky panky going on after the party. In Nazareth had it not been for my association with the driver and his tour guide I would have been left at Mazzawi gifts and handicrafts store talking to a group of people. Well, some people from Africa were in the store, and they thought that I was a Falasha, Ethiopian, or Nigerian. One woman walked up to me and spoke to me in Yoruba, then a man walked over and spoke to me in Swahili, then one woman walked over and spoke to me in Amharic, and I was looking at them in amazement because I could not understand a word they were saying. Then the woman who had spoke to me in Amharic asked me in perfect English, “Do you speak English”, I replied, “yes I do”, then she said that there was a bet on that I was from West Africa, I replied, “sad to say that I am from the state of Mississippi in America,” Then I was gang rushed, everyone had questions for me. I sat and had tea, cookies, dates, olives, and bread with them, and this really was impressing the driver and the tour guide. The  group was on the bus and were waiting on us, and they were getting a little angry, and calling me a show off. In Acre, the divinity student was one lost and confused individual. She did not know that this was another city of the Jonah and the Whale story, and the Knights Templar’s. Me and the tour guide went to the site where John the Baptist  is alleged to have been  beheaded, to a still flowing water well that was use by the Knights Templar’s, and saw some of their caves and tunnels, then we had refreshment and a snack at the Ptolmais Restaurant owned by the Telyas  Brothers. We left Acre for Nahariya, on our way there we made a stop in Megiddo, the site of several historical and biblical battles. We also made a stop at the ancient seaport and city of Caesarea, but I was the only one interested in those places, or knew anything about them. Most of the group was dying of beer withdrawal and in a rush to make our hotel, the Carlton in Nahariya. The hotel was a seaside resort, where the party went on all night. There was several international restaurants in the hotel, three full bars. In the amusements park next to the hotel there was a Bedouin tent to relax in. If peace and quite was in order, you could sit on the seaside promenade and listen to the waves of the Mediterranean sea, or just lay out in the sand and bake in the sun. While everyone were settling in and looking over the area, pounding back a few beers, me and the tour guide took the 7 mile dive up to Rosh Hanikra, the Northern most point in Israel, and the border of Lebanon, just a  mere 120 miles from Beirut. I had a leisure tour of the area, because the next morning that would be the first stop on our way to Galilee, and it would be in and out because the group wanted to spend as much time at the Yardenit (Yarden), the baptism site of Jesus on the Jordan River as possible. The next morning our day began with a stop in Rosh Hanikra as planed, and the divinity student got her comeuppance so to speak. She walked over to a shop owner who was sitting out front of his shop reading the morning news paper. She walked over and spoke to him in her best biblical Hebrew, he looked at her as if she had lost her ever loving mind. For several minutes she tried to converse with him but to no avail. I walked over to him and greeted him in the only Arabic word that I knew from the movies. He stood up, and returned the greeting. I asked him could we shop in his shop, and in prefect English he said sure. The divinity student said to me, “I did not know that you knew Hebrew”, I told her that I was not speaking Hebrew, I was speaking  Arabic.Then she asked me how did I know that he was an Arab. I replied, ” Look at the news paper that he was reading, I know the difference between Hebrew and Arabic writing.” Now this situation with the divinity student goes back to what I said in an earlier posting. Use common sense, let go of the ego, and don’t assume that you have to be fluent or proficient in the language of a country that you my be vacationing in. Our next stop was In Tiberias. While having a beer, a glass of wine, and eating the customary fish that Jesus feed the multitude with, the Saint Peter’s fish and bread at a restaurant on the dock on the Sea of Galilee, there was a loud booming sound, a little vibration, and the entire valley did a tilt to the right. We soon learned that a 4.2 earth quake had rocked the area, and it was the second quake to rattle the area in as many days. The Yardenit (yarden) baptism site on the  Jordan River was our last stop, and we had a long drive back to Beersheva.Now, I would like to say that I am not a show off, or think I am all of that. I like to seize the moment. While in Israel, or any country take off those rose-colored glasses, so that you will not view the country darkly. Open up a new window of the mind. Get out and about, mix and mingle and enjoy yourself. Now, here is the tour guide look at some of the best places that you should try to visit, and some of the best places to visit.
Ashdod, is the fifth-largest city in Israel, in the Southern District of the country, on the Mediterranean coast, with a population of 207,000. Ashdod is an important regional industrial center. The Port of Ashdod is Israel’s largest port accounting for 60% of the country’s imported goods. The first documented settlement in Ashdod dates to the Canaanite culture of 17th century BC, making the city one of the oldest in the world. Ashdod is mentioned thirteen times in the Bible. During its history the city was settled by Philistines, Israelites, Byzantines, Crusaders and Arabs. Modern Ashdod was established in 1956 on the sand hills near the site of the ancient town, and incorporated as a city in 1968, with a land-area of approximately 23.2 sq miles. Ancient settlement Human settlement in Ashdod dates from the Paleolithic Age Ashdod is mentioned in Ugaritic documents, the language of the ancient Canaanites. At the end of the 13th century BCE the Sea Peoples conquered and destroyed the city. By the beginning of the 12th century BCE the Philistines, generally thought to have been one of the Sea Peoples, ruled the city. During their reign, the city prospered and was a member of the Philistine pentapolis. In 950 BCE Ashdod was destroyed during Pharaoh Siamun’s conquest of the region. The city was not rebuilt until at least 815 BCE. Around 715 BCE, it was conquered by Sargon II, who destroyed the city and exiled its residents. Jewish inhabitants of Ashdod were resettled in Media after their failed uprising attempt against Assyrian dominance. The records indicate that 27,290 Jews were forced to settle in Ecbatana (Hamadan) and Susa in South West Persia. Asdûdu led the revolt of Philistines, Judeans, Edomites, and Moabites against Assyria after expulsion of king Akhimeti, whom Sargon had installed instead of his brother Azuri. Gath, (Gimtu) the city of Goliath birth belonged to the kingdom of Ashdod at that time. According to the Book of Nehemiah, the Ashdodites seem to represent the whole nation of the Philistines in the sixth century BCE. The speech of Ashdod which the younger generation of the Jews are described as adopting would simply be the general Philistine dialect. In the Book of Nehemiah, some residents of Jerusalem are said to have married women from Ashdod, and half of the children of these unions were reportedly unable to city understand Hebrew. Nehemiah 13:23-24, “they spoken the language of Ashdod.” The absorbed another blow in 605 BCE, when Nebuchadnezzar conquered it. In 539 BCE the city was rebuilt by the Persians, but was conquered in the wars of Alexander the great of Macedon. (Nehemiah 13:23).
Ashkelon or Ashqelon is a coastal city in the South District of Israel just a stone throw from Gaza. The ancient seaport of Ashkelon dates back to the Bronze Age. In the course of its history, it has been ruled by the Canaanites, the Philistines, The Israelites, the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Romans, the Persians, the Egyptians, the Muslims, the British and the Crusaders. It was destroyed by the Mamluks in 1270 and fell into disuse.The modern city of Ashkelon grew out of the Arab town of al-Majdal. In 1596 it was a village of 559 Muslim households, and in 1931, 6,166 Muslims and 41 Christians were living there. By 1948, the population had grown to about 11,000. Over the years, Ashkelon grew to a population of 108,900. The proximity to the beach and peaceful locale, made it an attractive destination for young families, as well as for retiring couples.The beautiful beaches in Ashkelon still draw tourists from Israel and without.
Hebron is the largest city in the West Bank, located in the south, 18 miles south of Jerusalem. It is home to some 166,000 Palestinians and over 500 Israeli Jews living in and around the historic Jewish Quarter. Hebron is located in the Palestinian territories and the Biblical region of Judea, it is the second holiest city in Judaism, after Jerusalem. Hebron is home to Hebron University and the Palestine Polytechnic University.The most famous historic site in Hebron sits on the Cave of the Patriarchs. Although the site is holy to Judaism, Christianity and Islam also accept it as a sacred site, due to scriptural references to Abraham. According to Genesis, he purchased the cave and the field surrounding it from Ephron the Hittite to bury his wife Sarah, subsequently Abraham Isaac, Rebecca, Jacob and Leah were also buried in the cave. The remaining Matriarch, Rachel, is buried outside Bethlehem. For this reason, Hebron is also referred to as ‘the City of the Patriarchs’ in Judaism, and regarded as one of its Four Holy Cities. Over and around the cave itself churches, synagogues and mosques have been built throughout history. The Isaac Hall is now the Ibrahimi Mosque, while the Abraham Hall and Jacob Hall serve as a Jewish synagogue. In medieval Christian tradition, Hebron was one of the three cities, the other two being Juttah and Ain Karim, that boasted of being the home of Mary’s cousin, Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist and wife of Zacharias, and thus possibly the birthplace of the Baptist himself. The above photo is of the church that sits on the Cave of the Patriarchs, and the bottom right photo is of the inscription on the tomb of Rececca.
Sodom is were two cities in the Bible which were destroyed by God.
For the sins of their inhabitants Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim were destroyed by “brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven.”[Gen 19:24-25] In Christianity and Islam, their names have become synonymous with impenitent sin, and their fall with a proverbial manifestation of God’s wrath. Qur’an(S15) Al-Hijr:72-73 Sodom and Gomorrah have been used as metaphors for vice and sexual deviation. In the photo, the standing peak or pillar is said to be Lots’ wife after she looked back upon the doomed cities, Gen 19:15-26
Tel Tzora, is a tell and Israeli archaeological site near the modern day kibbutz of the same name. It is a well-known tourist attraction regarded by many as the location of Samson’s tomb. His tomb is overlooking the Sorek valley near the Nahal Sorek or Brook of Sorek, also Soreq. The brook is one of the largest, most important drainage basins in the Judean Hills. It is mentioned in the Book of Judges 16:4 of the Bible as the border between the ancient Philistines and the Tribe of Dan of the ancient Israelites. It is known in Arabic as Wadi Surar. In the 19th century, Nahal Sorek served as an important waterway between the two major cities in the area, Jaffa and Jerusalem. Because railways at the time were reliant on water sources, several surveyors who planned the first railway in the Middle East, the Jaffa–Jerusalem line, decided to use Nahal Sorek as the main route for the line. While at that time the route was logical, when plans were made to renovate it in 2001, the digging of numerous tunnels was proposed to mainly avoid the Nahal Sorek route and shorten the line. Due in part to the opposition from the Israel Nature and National Parks Protection Authority, this plans was never materialized, and the old route on Nahal Sorek was refurbished complete and is still in use today.While still being adjacent to the Tel Aviv–Jerusalem railway today, Nahal Sorek mainly serves as a tourist attraction. Several small water reservoirs exist along its route, notably near Tel Shahar and Yesodot. Waterfalls are located on several of its tributaries, including Ayanot Dekalim in Beit Shemesh, Ein Sifla on Nahal HaMe’ara.
Lod or Lydda , Peter all but lived here, according to New Testament, Acts 9:32 And it came to pass, as Peter passed throughout all quarters, he came down also to the saints which dwelt at Lydda. Act 10:5-6 And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the sea side.The port of Joppa(Jaffa) is on the Mediterranean some 11 miles west of Lydda and part of the modern city of Tel Avivi. Today Lydda or Lod is located on the Sharon Plain 9 miles southeast of Tel Aviv in the Center District of Israel. At the end of 2007, it had a population of 67,000, roughly 80 percent Jewish and 20 percent Arab.The name is derived from the Biblical city of Lod. Israel’s main international airport, Ben Gurion International Airport previously called Lydda Airport, RAF Lydda, and Lod Airport is located in the city. Durning the Roman occupation In 43 CE, Cassius, the Roman governor of Syria, sold the inhabitants of Lod into slavery. During the First Jewish–Roman War, the Roman proconsul of Syria, Cestius Gallus, razed the town on his way to Jerusalem in 66 CE. It was occupied by Emperor Vespasian in 68 CE.The Crusaders occupied the city in 1099 and named it St. Jorge de Lidde. It was briefly conquered by Saladin, but retaken by the Crusaders in 1191. For the English Crusaders, it was a place of great significance as the birthplace of Saint George. A well-preserved mosaic floor dating to the Roman period was excavated in 1996 as part of a salvage dig conducted on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and the Municipality of Lod, prior to widening HeHalutz Street. The mosaic was covered over with soil at the conclusion of the excavation for lack of funds to conserve and develop the site.The mosaic is now part of the Lod Mosaic Archaeological Center.
Tiberias is a city on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, Lower Galilee, Israel. Tiberias was founded as a Jewish city sometime around 20 CE by Herod Antipas, son of Herod the Great, who made it the capital of his realm in Galilee. It was named in honor of the Roman Emperor Tiberius. Since the sixteenth century, Tiberias has been considered one of Judaism’s Four Holy Cities, along with Jerusalem, Hebron and Safed. In the 2nd-10th centuries, Tiberias was the largest Jewish city in the Galilee, and the political and religious hub of the Jews of Palestine. According to Christian tradition, Jesus performed several miracles in the Tiberias district, making it an important pilgrimage site for devout Christians. Tiberias has historically been known for its hot springs, believed to cure skin and other ailments, for thousands of years. There is a legend that Tiberias was built on the site of the biblical village of Rakkat, mentioned in the Book of Joshua. A discussion of Tiberias as Rakkat appears in the Talmud.Under the Roman Empire, the city was known by its Greek name Τιβεριάς (Tiberiás, Modern Greek Τιβεριάδα Tiveriáda). In the days of Antipas, the Jews refused to settle there; the presence of a cemetery rendered the site ritually unclean. Antipas settled predominantly non-Jews there from rural Galilee and other parts of his domains in order to populate his new capital, and Antipas furthermore built a palace on the acropolis. The prestige of Tiberias was so great that the sea of Galilee soon came to be called the sea of Tiberias.The city was governed by a city council of 600 with a committee of 10 until 44 CE when a Roman Procurator was set over the city after the death of Agrippa I. In 61 CE Agrippa II annexed the city to his kingdom whose capital was Caesarea Phillippi. During the First Jewish–Roman War Josephus Flavius took control of the city and destroyed Herod’s palace but was able to stop the city being pillaged by his Jewish army. Where most other cities in Palestine were razed, Tiberias was spared because its inhabitants remained loyal to Rome after Josephus Flavius had surrendered the city to the Roman emperor Vespasian. It became a mixed city after the fall of Jerusalem; with Judea subdued, the southern Jewish population migrated to Galilee. A 2,000 year-old Roman theatre was discovered 49` below ground near Mount Bernike in the Tiberias hills. It seated over 7,000 people. Excavations on the shore unearthed a rare coin with the image of Jesus on one side and the Greek words Jesus the Messiah King of Kings on the other. It belongs to a series of coins issued in Constantinople to commemorate the First Millennium of Jesus birth. Such coins have surfaced in neighboring countries, such as Turkey, but this is the first one found in Israel. It is believed to have been brought to Tiberias by Christian pilgrims.
Rosh Hanikra is in the northwestern corner of Israel, on the border of Israel and Lebanon. The white chalk cliffs offer a spectacular panoramic view of Haifa Bay, the hills of the Galilee and the Mediterranean.The book of Joshua (13:6) mentions “Misraphot Mayim” south of Rosh Hanikra, as the border of the Israelite tribes during the 14 -13 centuries BCE. Jewish sages referred to the cliff as “The Ladder of Tire.” The Muslim conquerors renamed the area A-Nawakir (the grottoes). The present name, Rosh Hanikra, is a hebraicized version of the Arabic Ras-A-Nakura. In ancient times, Rosh Hanikra was along the trade route between the northern civilizations in Lebanon and Syria and the southern ones in Palestine, Egypt and North Africa. The place was then known as “the Ladders of Tyre.” It has been the gateway in and out of Palestine since ancient times. In 333 Alexander the Great entered the Land of Israel through Rosh Hanikra, and is believed to have led his Greek army through a tunnel his forces dug in these cliffs. Throughout human history, Rosh HaNikra served as a passage point for trade caravans and armies between Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Egypt, and Africa. During World War II, the British dug a tunnel for the railway running between Haifa and Beirut to facilitate the movement of supplies from Egypt to the north, and for trains on what was the Cairo-Istanbul railway. Rosh Hanikra was the site where Israeli and Lebanese officials negotiated and concluded an armistice in 1949 which ended the Lebanese-Israeli component of the 1948 War of Israeli Independence.
Caesarea is a town in Israel on the outskirts of Caesarea Maritima, the ancient port city. It is located mid-way between Tel Aviv and Haifa 27 miles, on the Israeli Mediterranean coast near the city of Hadera. Modern Caesarea as of December 2007 has a population of 4,500 people, and is the only Israeli locality managed by a private organization, the Caesarea Development Corporation, and also one the most populous localities not recognized as a local council. It lies under the jurisdiction of the Hof HaCarmel Regional Council. Caesarea is believed to have been built on the ruins of Stratonospyrgos Straton’s Tower, founded by Straton I of Sidon. It was probably an agricultural storehouse in its earliest configuration. In 90 BCE, Alexander Jannaeus captured Straton’s Tower as part of his policy of developing the shipbuilding industry and enlarging the Hasmonean kingdom. Straton’s Tower remained a Jewish city for two generations, until the Roman conquest of 63 BCE when the Romans declared it an autonomous city. The pagan city underwent vast changes under Herod the Great, who renamed it Caesarea in honor of the emperor. In 22 BCE he began construction of a deep-sea harbor and built storerooms, markets, wide roads, baths, temples to Rome and Augustus, and imposing public buildings Every five years the city hosted major sports competitions, gladiator games, and theatrical productions. Caesarea also flourished during the Byzantine period. Caesarea lay in ruins until the nineteenth century when the village of Qisarya, the Arabic name for Caesarea was established in 1884 by Muslim immigrants from Bosnia who built a small fishing village on the ruins of the Crusader fortress on the coast.The kibbutz of Sdot Yam was established 1 mile south in 1940. Many of Qisarya’s inhabitants left before 1948, when a railway was built bypassing the port, ruining their livelihood. Caesarea Is mentioned in Act 10:1 “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band.”
Megiddo is a kibbutz in northern Israel. Located in the Jezreel Valley, it falls under the jurisdiction of Megiddo Regional Council. In 2006 it had a population of 356. It is located near the intersection between highways 65 from Hadera to Afula and 66 going from Haifa south to the West Bank, which is called the Megiddo Junction.Located near the site of the several Battles of Megiddo and Tel Megiddo, a rich archeological site. In 2005, Israeli archeologists discovered the remains of an ancient church perhaps the eldest in the Holy Land under the grounds of the military prison. Authorities are speculating about moving the prison so the site can be accessible to tourists. In apocalyptic literature, Mount Megiddo, the hill overlooking the valley where the current kibbutz is located, is identified as the site of the final battle between the forces of good and evil at the end of time, known as Armageddon.
Jericho is a city located near the Jordan River in the West Bank of the Palestinian Territories. It is the capital of the Jericho Governorate, and has a population of over 20,000 Palestinians. Situated well below sea level on an east-west route 10 miles north of the Dead Sea, Jericho is the lowest permanently inhabited site on earth. It is also believed to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities of the world. Described in the Hebrew Bible as the “City of Palm Trees”, copious springs in and around Jericho have made it an attractive site for human habitation for thousands of years.It is known in Judeo-Christian tradition as the place of the Israelites’ return from bondage in Egypt, led by Joshua, the successor to Moses. Archaeologists have unearthed the remains of over 20 successive settlements in Jericho, the first of which dates back to 11,000 years ago (9000.The first permanent settlement was built near the Ein as-Sultan spring between 8000 and 7000 BCE by an unknown people, and consisted of a number of walls, a religious shrine, and a 23-foot tower with an internal staircase. After a few centuries, it was abandoned for a second settlement, established in 6800 BCE, perhaps by an invading people who absorbed the original inhabitants into their dominant culture. Artifacts dating from this period include ten skulls, plastered and painted so as to reconstitute the individuals’ features.Theserepresent the first example of portraiture in art history, and it is thought that these were kept in people’s homes while the bodies were buried. This was followed by a succession of settlements from 4500 BCE onward, the largest of these being constructed in 2600 BCE.. Archaeological evidence indicates that in the latter half of the Middle Bronze Age.
“The worst thing about being a tourist is having other tourists recognize you as a tourist.”
Russell Baker

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Responses

  1. […] here: Israel, Tours Against The Grain « Magnolia's Travelogue Share and […]

  2. What a remarkable way to view Israel. You have given insights on places few will ever tread. You seem to have no fear of the unknown and embrace the adventure as if it were a common occurance. I can see so much through your travel and will surely attempt to go beyond the ordinary.

  3. It was exciting to read the historical points of view as well as the more informal, personal content. Well written and plenty of food for thought.


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