Monday, December 26, 2011

Rampart Walk and Western Wall

So on Thursday, Nana and I went with Elaine to do some grocery shopping for Christmas dinner... Oh what an experience!! It''s so hard to buy things when everything is in Hebrew or Arabic!! But it was very fun. 

Massive Cabbage

Double Banana

Then after lunch, Eric, Rachel, and I went to the Rampart Walk. Here you literally walk on top of the walls surrounding the Old City. We walked over to Damascus Gate, through the Christian Quarter, and then at Jaffa Gate we went on top of the walls for the southern rampart walk, walking from Jaffa all the way to Dung Gate in the Jewish Quarter. The day was filled with lots of walking, but fun walking nonetheless. And to top it all off, it was a rather warm day as well. 

Rachel and I on the Rampart Walk

Just past this cemetery is where Oscar Schindler is buried


After the Rampart Walk, we went over to the Western Wall. What an experience! I have experience a number of different religious cultures while being here this trip and it is so great. People were dancing and singing throughout the Plaza, praying so earnestly at the Wall, laughing, all the above. We then proceeded to make our way home, WALKING. We made a pit stop in the Qidron Valley to look around, explore, and take some pictures, then had to hurry home before the sun set. 

Rach and I at the Western Wall

Western Wall Plaza

Sunset over Jerusalem


Western Wall

And then after we got home, we decorated Christmas cookies! Who knew that a 20 year old would have made a bigger mess than an 8 year old.... 

The walk home was CRAZY! We really had to hustle to get home before dark. And we were going basically straight up the mountain! It was very intense but so much fun. We passed a few groups along the way, one through Hyde Park that were friendly enough and then another at the top of Hyde Park that were a little sketchy but we made it through. Then as we were exiting the park a teenage boy just came riding along on his donkey! The things you see in Israel... We ended up on some back dirt roads and found our way to a main road through a neighborhood where we encountered a group of little girls who were so cute and friendly and even though they didn't speak English, they just kept saying hello as we approached and as we passed and went down the hill. When we got to the Lower Gate of the JC, there was a pad lock on the door so while we were waiting for security to come unlock it, a group of young boys came by and showed us how to open it, even though it didn't work. It was quite cute and such a fun, fun, busy day. I am just LOVING every minute of this trip.