Two astronomers. Separated by only 22 degrees, 58 minutes of latitude, 33 degrees, 29 minutes of longitude, yet seemingly worlds apart. Their common goal: figure out the very nature of the Universe and its womenfolk.

Monday, November 27, 2006

More images of Eretz

My parents, sister and sister's friend arived in Israel for a long weekend. As my parents were busy meeting people I was assigned to tourist guide detail. It was fun. We started by going to the old city where we saw this guy carrying a stone slab on his head. Its things like that which remind me that I live in a 3rd world country. Of course we saw the 1300 year old mosque (atop the "temple mount" or "noble sanctuary" or "Mount Morriah" or "Zion" or - my personal favortie name made popular by Jules in Pulp Fiction - the "Holy of Holies"). After we left the mosque we went to the wailing wall and I spotted a white dove nestled in the cracks. These stones are from the time of Solomon which means they are around 2500 years old. A short walk from these two sites is the church of the holy sepulchre which houses "golgotha" - a stone where it is believed both Adam died and where Jesus was both crucified and ressurected. Outside the church we met two ethiopian Copts (you can see them in the fore ground above). I started speaking to them about their church and found out that this man was the patriarch of the ethiopian christian community (which numbers about 3000). Inside the church, we found Chrusader graffitti. ... and a beautiful 1500 year old mosiac of Jesus. The place was full of monks praying and had an eerily silent feel to it. We left Jerusalem and went to the dead sea - the lowest place on earth - whose surface area is evaporating at the rate of 1 sq m per day. The coastal recssion is starkingly obvious. The next morning we headed to masada, a mountain fort which served as the last stand of the jewish rebels in 70 C.E. The victory by the romans ushered in 2000 years of diaspora. The view of the mountains (whose peaks are still below sea level) and lake was breathtaking. I saw a pretty desert bird and of course some archeological remains of the fort, although I suspect this amphora is a fake. Judging by their attire, I believe my sister and her freind enjoyed their time in the middle east!!


Blogger Rob said...

Hey Noam - apologies for a lack of commentary! I love these shots, I was desperate for you to put up some images of Israel and you've not disappointed. Looks like an incredible place.

12:48 AM

Anonymous rachel L said...

hi noam its your sister rachel. call me ASAP where the fuck are you. also, great pubquiz. and great photos. your grammar could use some work. JOKE. you're great. love you, miss you, kiss you-rachie

3:54 AM


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