Local time at Horbat Omrit, Israel

Friday, May 16, 2008

Day -1

Bill mentioned our second frustrated attempt at visiting the Israel Museum, what he didn't mention was the way in which the whole road had been cleared so that George preceeded by half a dozen motor bikes, and in a convoy of 15 other vehicles could sweep through majestically while the rest of us were held back by police and army. There were no cheers from our group as he passed indeed when we were released by police I heard one woman remark "now we are a free people. As we hiked towards the museum we came across a group of about 50 or 60 soldiers armed to the teeth - just waiting for something to happen. Each day we've seen dozens of heavily armed police and soldiers; yesterday we actually saw a young couple in Tee shirts and jeans each carrying a sub-machine gun!!

Anyway the Islamic Art Museum was great - so sucks to you, George! We saw some beautiful Persian miniatures of religious subjects with intricate arab calligraphy, together with very beautiful pottery and glass with comples geomatric designs. I enjoyed this a lot.

After picking up our car we set off to meet my friends at a traditional Palestine restaurant. We ate outside starting with an array of salad dishes, including homus, toasted lumps of goat cheese, taboulet, a spicy chilli dish and many more. I followed this with a huge piece of leg of lamb served with rice. Delicious.

My friends who had been in the area for the last five years talked about their disgust at the way the Palestinians were treated. I expect we'll see something of this first hand if we go to Bethlehem with the group.

After luch, drove back home, lay round, drank and read. This is the life!!

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