Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Today we went to Jericho.  It is in a Palestinian  Area.  So to play it safe, we used my friend Walid, a Palestinian taxi driver.  He makes every trip enjoyable, memorable and fun.  We drove through these narrow roads to get to the main highway from Bethlehem. The USA has paid for many of these roads in Palesine, since Israel has cut them off basically from the world. It would be much easier to go out of Jerusalem, but Walid cannot cross the border / checkpoint.  What a shame.  Maybe the talks that start on September 2 can remedy some of this.  Anyways, first we went to swim in the Dead Sea.  That is always an experience since you can float in about six inches of water.  Then we went to Jericho.  The USA paid for a huge training area and also train the Palestinian Police and some Military in this facility.  With all the Mosque arguments going on in New York City, it's interesting that there is a new Mosque inside the walls of this USA paid facility. We went to the Mount of Temptation, Zachaeus' Sycamore Tree, a branch of the Jordan River, the spring that has fed the city of Jericho for 10,000 years.  On the way back to Jerusalem, we stopped at The Mosque of Moses. On to Bethlehem and said a final goodbye to Walid.  In the past month, he was a big part of my travels.  So I willl miss him. Did I mention that he is huge.  He has been Mr. Palestine for two years and also Mr. Egypt in the past years The pictures are of Walid, Steve and Judy.  The other two pictures are of the Dead Sea.  The water level has dropped so much that perhaps in 20 years, it might just be desert. By the way we did not go into the bar and it is 1371 feet below Sea Level or 418 meters.