Saturday, December 17, 2011

Garden of Gethsemane and Garden Tomb

So today was full of kinds of goodness. We started the day by going to church (yes, church is observed on the traditional Sabbath which here is Saturday) and then came home for a snack. After, we all piled in the car and headed to the Garden of Gethsemane. What an experience that was! You can read about all of these different places and see pictures but being there is a whole different experience. We walked through where some olive trees were and then went in to a church that has what is believed to be the same stone where the traditional picture of Christ pleading in agony is. The church was dark (meant to symbolize night time), extremely quiet, and cold. After that, we walked across the street to a newer garden that is 'private' that you have to ask to go in. We were the only ones there so we were able to talk and read some scriptures and read a few hymns to help remember the events that took place in the Garden of Gethsemane. You could really feel the spirit throughout the entire experience. It was interesting when we first walked in to the Garden because the man at the door immediately asked Eric if we were Mormons. 
After, we attempted to drive through the city just over to the Garden Tomb. I still cannot believe the traffic here! It is so insane! People drive wherever whenever and don't care if you are in their way. They park on the sides of roads and on sidewalks, and have zero patients. It definitely is an experience in an of itself. After we spent some time at the Garden Tomb site, we attempted to catch a taxi back to the Jerusalem. Eric called security to get one but because traffic is so crazy it was a little late. So there we were, just hanging out on the side of the street in East Jerusalem, after dark. For safety reasons, it is usually best to stay away from those parts of the city after dark. Luckily, or maybe not so luckily depending on what could have happened, some Israeli police were parked right next to where they were standing. It was interesting to see them walking around with AK47's hanging from their shoulders. It really shows how different it is here in Israel compared to Utah! Here a some pictures from the day...there are more on Facebook as well as Eric's blog

Pomelo... like a pomegranate but not as bitter

the insides...

Custard apple! Who knew I would like something that looks like this!

The Garden of Gethsemane

Just a glimpse of the insane parking here

waiting on the street for the taxi....