Onwared to Qumran! This is where John the Baptist probably stayed for a while as a member of the Essenes and was the place where the famous Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Very interesting insight into this Jewish sect of the 1st century.
Then it was up to Jerusalem, but first a stop at the place of Martha, Mary and Lazarus--the city of Bethany which is just on the opposite side of the Mount of Olives. A beautiful church built over the house of Lazarus and with his tomb nearby.
Then it was off to the Israeli Museum to see the model of old Jerusalem and the "Shrine of the Book" which is where the Dead Sea Scrolls are kept. On the way we drove through the several neighborhoods of Jerusalem, East, West, etc... we saw the Hassidic Jews who control a whole section of town, even to the point that you are unable to drive in the neighborhood on the Sabbath and of course we saw the ugly and hideous WALL that has been built between the west bank town of Bethany and Jerusalem. Imagine Tijuana wall and you get the picture.
We are staying in the Arab East Jerusalem and I'm looking forward to a nice walk to the old city tonight after dinner. Weather? Very nice and comfortable in Jerusalem, about 84 degrees. Very nice cool breeze blowing as I walked out on the terrace of my hotel room. Masada was the hottest, probably pushing 95 or so, but we were there in the morning so it really wasn't bad....didn't keep anyone from touring etc... The good news...NO CROWDS! It has been a great time to tour thus far as we have not had to deal with big crowds at all. Here are the pix! Sorry in advance, they are a bit out of sequence.... Enjoy
|Standing on top of Masada looking out over |
the Dead Sea and Judean Wilderness
|Marlene!! Stop taking my picture!! Ha!|
Standing in the ruins of Masada where the rebels fled
from the Romans
|Linda with the ruins of the bath house |
behind her...Herod had EVERYTHING you could
imagine in this fortress
|It was probably close to a 100 degrees up top|
|Marlene and Linda at the Palace which overlooks|
the Dead Sea
|Where John the Baptizer would have|
eaten when he was at Qumran! Site of
the Dead Sea Scrolls
|Cave 4 of Qumran where the best scrolls|
were found by a shepherd boy
|Notice the Palestinian flags over the sign|
directing you to Lazarus Tomb
|For those who miss the bus...a camel every|
hour on the hour
|The controversial wall that has been built|
between Bethany and Jerusalem
|The three newest members of the |
community at Qumran...pass the locusts
and wild honey please....
|Linda and Marlene leaving me behind in search|
of water....or at least falafel...it was lunch time
|The church of Lazarus, Martha and Mary|
|According to my Oxford guide these are 4th century|
Mosiacs from one of the first churches in
Bethany. such beauty in a FLOOR!
|I am the Resurrection and the Life....Amen|
Inside the church at Bethany where
Lazarus was raised.
|A great gate leading to the church |
in Bethany from the street
|The church was built to look like|
a tomb in remembrance of
the Raising of Lazarus---Bethany