1srae1 - Jerusa1em 26th February 1999

Shalom

I have reached the Holy Land but I couldn't drive here over land because of the missing Carnet, so my first idea was to take a boat from Turkey to the Turkish part of Cyprus, cross over to the Greek part and take another boat to 1srae1, but there is no way you can enter the Greek part once there is evidence that you have visited the Turkish part of Cyprus. So I had to go via Rhodos to Cyprus and 1srae1.

Rhodos town is a walled city in fine shape and there was hardly any tourists there when I was there so everything was closed. The boat to 1srae1 made a stop during the day in Limasol/Cyprus and we had a chance to go in land, but it was Wednesday and all the shops closes at noon, why not I would also like to have a break in the middle of the week.

When I arrived in 1srae1 I had to pay 90 $ for liability insurance on the bike for the rest of th month (10 days) and if I wanted March too it would be the double, as this was not enough the port bank charged 20 $ in commission on changing 200 $, not exactly the most warm welcome I have experienced.

74-jerus What surprised me most was the short distances here, I am doing considerably less than 100 km per day. I stayed a few days in Te1 Aviv and have almost been a week here in Jerusa1em. I am starting to like it here, there is so much to see that there is no way you can cover it all, so I try not to, still keeping the diet I started half a year ago - only one ruin/museum a day, that leaves me plenty of time to walk around the old walled town where I also live, feel the atmosphere and sit down and read a book - "The Source" 900 pages by James A Michener is an excellent choice right here.

Te1 Aviv and the New city here in Jerusa1em is almost like being in a western metropol, with the difference that Mc Donald, Burger King, even Pizza Hut is "kosher", and last Friday there were a 4 page article in Jerusa1em Post about a book called "Kosher Sex" - Kosher means that you cannot mix Milk and Flesh, That makes you think doesn't it - I mean who would enjoy a Pizza without cheese.

Jerusa1em is a holy city to many religions and it seems that all of them have a church here - just like an embassy. Having all the religions together at one place reveals at least one difference: Jews and Muslim worshippers are almost only men where as the Christian Pilgrims here a mostly vomen.

Jerusa1em is well worth visiting, it is probably the world oldest tourist town, although the tourist of former times probably would prefer another title, just like I prefer to called a traveller, as if it would make me any different/better.

70-jerus The main attraction here must be the "Dome of the Rock" a muslim mosque build in the 7th century above a rock where notabilities like Abraham, David, Solomon, Jesus and Muhamed made their way into history. The building is absolutely marvelous, probably the most beautiful building I have ever seen, and inside you can see and and touch the rock on which Abraham was to offer his son some 3800 years ago.

On a second place I would put my visit to the much disputed underground city and the tunnel along the Western Wall, listening to a very good guide who explained how the ruble over the years slowly have lifted the town many meters, and down here underground you can see the roads etc as they were 2000 years ago. It seems that the local people are eager to help the future archaeologist throwing garbage everywhere so that in 3925 they can remove the ruble and see what have happened yesterday.

I probably also should mention the church of Sepulcher at Golgatha, located where Jesus was crucified and the tomb from which he rose is. Although older than the "Dome of the ROck" it has none of it beauty.

The Western Wall you can see yourself at http://www.westernwall.org

It is a great privilege to be Danish here since everybody remembers how the Danes managed to rescue almost all the Jews from the Nazi regime, but I wasn't aware that we were so successful that only 50 of the 6.000.000 Jewish Holocaust victims were from Denmark, but here everybody seems to know.

Peter Lorenzen Petersen
DK 9000 Aalborg
DANMARK
Phone (+45) 98 16 76 97
-- peter@lorenzen.us
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