We are flying into Tel Aviv, where we'll be spending a few days. Then, we are heading to Jerusalem, which will be our home base for the remainder of the trip. In addition to seeing Jerusalem itself, we'll be taking some side trips to Caesaria, Masada, and the Dead Sea. (We considered doing a day trip to Petra in Jordan. Ultimately we decided against it due to the massive amount of time it would involve.)
Admittedly, I am feeling overwhelmed by the sheer number of things to see and do in Israel. I'm trying not to go crazy. A friend has invited us over for Shabbat dinner next Friday, which will be a great experience. I am also hoping to go to mass at some point. In addition to all the religious, archaeological, and natural sites, I want to just soak up the culture (and the food).
|Shakshuka - basically eggs poached in a tomato sauce.|
(I once tried to make this at home and it didn't turn out very well.)
(NOTE: A lot of folks have expressed concern over the safety of traveling to Israel. However, several friends/family who live in Israel and/or have visited said that despite the alarming news headlines, everyday life in Israel is normal, and security is very high.)
This trip has really snuck up on me. I've been scrambling to get everything in order prior to departing. Putting the mail on hold, notifying our banks/credit cards, trying to finish all the perishable food in the fridge, tying up loose ends in the office, the list goes on and on.
I strongly believe in traveling with minimal luggage. However, packing for this trip has been a challenge since we'll be experiencing a wide range of climates. There will be much layering and as many mix-and-match items as possible. I could really use a good Mary Poppins-type bag right about now!
On that note, I miss the days when we didn't have to worry about packing a zillion different types of chargers/cables for all the various electronics. This picture isn't mine, but it's pretty darned close to what I'm dealing with!
I am packing running gear, of course. However, I don't anticipate I'll be doing more than a few easy 3- or 4-milers while I am there. I've been struggling recently with a flare-up of knee and hip discomfort. (I blame this on doing less yoga. It's a topic for another day.)
As always, I have a ton of catching up to do from the past few weeks. If I can get my butt into gear, I am ambitiously hoping to schedule some posts for while I'm away. (!?!?!?!?)
Either way - more to come.