Day 7: Zippori National Park

Trip Start May 04, 2012
Trip End May 27, 2012

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Monday, May 14, 2012

Looking at the photos from today and my journal, it seems the day is all about portraits.

Our hosts in Rosh Pinna. This morning over breakfast, we meet Mote's wife, Esther.  When we couldn’t purchase our tickets for the Shlomi Shabbat concert on-line with our U.S. credit card, she had tried to find a booking agent that would accept our credit card and spoke English.  It was a pleasure for us to meet her and thank her personally.  We talked more about their lives. When the travel, they can’t wait to get home.  They genuinely love where they live and what they do. We’re glad that we chose this comfortable place for our two night stay in Zichron Ya’acov.

Olive tree in the fields.  The camera settings were off from the previous night and with my
sunglasses on it took me awhile to realize the problem.  This is a happy accident as I like
how the tree is distinguished in the landscape.

Harvey in the Six-Shaft Tunnel at Zippori (also known as Sepphoris).  Here is Harvey by the flashlight of his cell phone.  The walk is completely in the dark so you must bring your own flashlights.  The entrance is at shaft 4 and you walk underground to the exit at shaft 6.  There is a Go/No Go sign with a gage that shows the narrowest and lowest part of the tunnel.  The rest of the tunnel is higher and you can pass through most of it upright or bending over slightly.  You can test yourself at this signpost before entering the tunnel.  Why go?  It’s fun!  The tunnel is part of the ancient water reservoir and tunnel system that regulated the flow of water into Zippori; the tunnels are now dry.  In this area of Zippori, there is also a section of the tunnel system that is very deep and airy.    A great contrast to the close quarters of the underground water channel. 

Here is Harvey at Zippori, an archaelogical site dating from about 100 B.C.  Harvey is always looking at beautiful women.  Remains of Zippori include a system of streets, public buildings, dwellings, a theater, a central market, bathhouses, a synagogue and churches, most of which date from the Roman and Byzantine periods as well as a fortress and church from the Crusader period.

Here is a truly exceptional mosaic at Zippori!  Exquisite workmanship enables us to
Connect with the artist’s intentions thousands of years later.  How cool is that!

Tips for visiting Zippori which we wish we knew in advance:

-       Yes, definitely do the water reservoir area including the two walks in through the tunnels before visiting the main site.  Bring a flashlight or have a flashlight app on your smartphone.

ˇ       Bring a picnic lunch.  The guide book says there is a café but you can only get cold drinks and ice cream.  Fortunately we had snacks with us.  We toyed with asking a bus tour group if we could join them, but I was feeling shy.

We checked into our B&B in Rosh Pina, in northern Israel.  Interesting that our B&B name is 1885 Suites (the family of our hosts in Zichron Ya’acov came to Israel in 1885 – is this a coincidance about 1885?).   The building is one of the first in Rosh Pina.  Over dinner Harvey & I talked about how the next 10 years will be bringing many changes to our lives.  We remember our energy level on our last trip 4 years ago  and a slower pace is much more comfortable now.  We must have been on adrenaline in Tel Aviv since after we left the city, we have just slowed down.  We’re okay with that – just recognizing that we need to listen to our bodies, stay flexible with our plans and go with the flow.

We’re off to sleep now!

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