We rented a car on Friday so we could do a day trip to The Dead Sea and Jericho.
Arne (one of the actors) has a terrible sense of direction, Graham (the other actor) is ok. So I wielded the map and navigated while Arne drove. Arne is a good driver despite his terrible sense of direction, so between the three of us we eventually make it to our destination in Jerusalem with the car! lol!
Driving to The Dead Sea was easy, just one highway to follow!
A sight on the side of the road on the way to the Dead Sea.
It was an incredible day. One I won't ever forget! The Dead Sea was so amazing! It felt so tropical in some ways, palm trees, beautiful blue blue water, flowers, sand...Only it's in the middle of the desert. I saw the shores of Jordan that day too, on the other side of the Dead Sea of course! ;)
And the mud at the Dead Sea! It was so neat! Gummy and cool, the sand exfoliated a bit. After I let the mud dry and rinsed it off my skin felt incredible! Never softer!
And floating in the Dead Sea was so cool! To just lie there and float. Relaxing. But if you turned onto your stomach for some reason your body would want to go into the water head first. Which is bad! ...the water tasted awful. I didn't get a big mouthful, just a drop in my mouth. So so so salty. At this point Swimming in the Dead Sea was the highlight of the trip. One of the coolest things I have ever done in my life.
Then we drove to Jericho. What a cool city. It's the oldest city in the world.
Market Square in Jericho.
I found it much better than Jerusalem in a lot of ways. It's only Palestinian people living there so there is none of the religious tension that there is in Jerusalem. Palestinian people are so nice, friendly and kind.
That being said I would never visit Jericho alone. The men there stared at me very openly. I stuck pretty close to the guys. That was't happening so openly in Jerusalem. I would feel very safe travelling in Jerusalem by myself.
We had lunch at a Palestinian restaurant in the market square. I had Falafel.
These were just the starters for lunch!
I was too hot to be adventurous. I just needed a little something I knew I liked in my tummy to keep my going.
We visited the Sycamore Tree in Jericho. It's believed to be 2000 years old. It is said that a man by the name of Zacchaeus climbed this tree to get a better view of Jesus walking through the crowed streets. I don't know much more about the story. The tree was cool though.
There were several men selling souvenirs there who were a bit pushy...I bought a woman's Palestinian kaffiya (that's the scarf I'm wearing in the pic. beside me is the man who sold it to me.). He kept touching my head and telling me how beautiful I was. I couldn't tell if he was telling the truth, or if he was trying to sell me a scarf. Ah Well...
Then we visited some Palace ruins (Hisham's Palace) built in 743-744 AD. It was destroyed by an earthquake in 749 AD so it has been ruinous for a long time! It was beautiful there too. Beautiful carvings and there were some amazing mosaics that had been miraculously preserved as well.
I couldn't resist sitting on the ancient toilets! lol!
We were all pretty tired at this point and headed back to Jerusalem. We had a rehearsal then Graham, Arne and I went out for dinner. We went to a trendy spot in West Jerusalem called Foccasia Bar. It was ok. The smaller, more authentic places we've been to were better, but you never know till you try right? There were a lot of Western items on the menu. We of course ordered foccasia which was delicious! I had linguine marinara. It was ok. I've had better in Winnipeg.
I can't believe we did all of that in one day. And the afternoon sun is so hot there. It's nothing like Winnipeg. Somehow I didn't burn though...I just got a touch of colour. And my legs were sore from walking...but my skin felt like a baby's bum! lol!
I'll post Days 5 & 6 later this week!