The Amazing Race Meets National Lampoon’s Vacation

Posts Tagged ‘tel aviv’

Andrew’s Day 8

Posted by madtrippin on April 15, 2008

We got something of a late start today – 9:00am.  We’ve been leaving the hotel at 8:30.  We headed over the Garden Tomb today.  This is also a possible location of Jesus’ tomb – the other being at the Russian Orthodox church both Gabe and I complained about a few days ago.


Historical records and the bible both seem to point to the Garden Tomb as a more likely location.  It’s actually an interesting site.  It’s owned and operated by a non-denominational, non-profit group.  It’s a one-acre site just outside the old city walls and is brilliantly landscaped.


We then headed to another church that was just above the garden of Gethsemane – the name escapes me at the moment.  This is where Jesus is said to have been tried by the Jews before going before Pontius Pilot.  The mosaics were crazy.  I would have posted some photos, but I had already packed my camera cord for the trip we’ll be taking to Rome in the morning (we leave at 2:00 am for the airport in Tel Aviv).  Gabe has some good shots on his last post (read at your own risk).


Then we headed back to the hotel with a half-day free.  We all took a short rest and then we (Gabe and our parents) went out to the old city to walk the crazy labyrinth and do some last minute shopping.  We’ve really got this haggling thing down to a science.  The key is to be prepared to walk away, even if you really want the item.


I wanted one item and the vendor started out at $40, which was a joke.  I just started walking.  He then went down to $20 (“because business was slow today” he said).  I turned and told him it wasn’t even close and started walking again.  He then went down to $15 and just before I got out of earshot, he went down to $10.  Man I’m good.  I learned from the best – my mom.


Here are some shots of my kids I downloaded from the camera before the trip, just to have some images in my post.  The first is of Emma (She’s 8 years old) and the second is Noah (5)

 with our neighbor’s dog Lenny.







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Andrew’s 1st Day…

Posted by madtrippin on April 8, 2008

This is really the second day, but first in Israel – the first was ALL travel.  I won’t be posting pictures this time, as there’s no WIFI at this hotel and it’s getting late, but we’ll work it out for tomorrow. 

Sunday night I checked my flight, just for the heck of it and found out my original flight was cancelled and resceduled to arrive in NY at 10pm.  The problem with that was that the flight to Rome was to leave NY at 4pm.  Needless to say… I freaked out and talked to the travel agent and they said to just show up when you were supposed to be there and the airline would fix it. 

Monday at 4:45am the cab showed up and took me to the airport to the tune of $57.  I got there and rescheduled a flight at 6:00am through Detroit and then NY.  Met up with Gabe, mom and dad and the rest of the group at crazy insane JFK.  We hopped on the overnight flight and then transferred in Rome to fly to Tel Aviv.  I learned that, although most Europeans cherish the use of standing in line… that doesn’t apply to Italians or Israelis.

The flight to Rome was really long, but bearable.  I listened to an audiobook – I am Legend – not bad.  I slept all the way through the flight to Israel, then hopped on a bus for Tiberias with the crew.  Israel is much more diverse than I’d thought (in terms of climate).  It’s mostly very dry, but there are some moist fertile areas that are totally based on agriculture.  We saw the Sea of Gallilee and took a few pics and saw the notorious Golan Heights.  We’re staying in a hotel right across the Sea of Gallilee from the heights and Syria for 2 days.

The trip as been pretty uneventful as of yet, other than Gabe’s inappropriate comments, that fortunately, everyone in the group seems to think are funny.  We’re also going to try some Israeli beverage called Sakura (not sure of the spelling or pronunciation really).  More on that tomorrow.

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