Shabbot at the Kotel

Trip Start Jul 05, 2012
Trip End Jul 26, 2012

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Where I stayed
Hashimi Hotel Jerusalem
Read my review - 3/5 stars

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Saturday, July 14, 2012

July 14th Shabbot at the Kotel

Friday morning after breakfast the bus took us into Jerusalem.  We picked up the light rail on Jaffa Street to the Damascus Gate, and we meandered our way to our hotel in the Arab Quarter. This weekend we made it to the City of David which included Hezekiah's Tunnel and returned up the hill going through the ancient Heriodian sewers.  This passageway ended leading us into a massive dig pit about 20ft under the current street level at the site of what was a parking lot when we had come in 2009...Amazing! Here is what seemed like a huge maybe palace complex with mosaic floors,   lots of rooms (many with plaster),  and a courtyard with partial columns.   We also did some shopping in the Suq and I bought two little clay oil lamps for my artifact teaching unit at school. 

I enjoyed venturing off on my own at dusk to get some evening pictures at the Kotel (Western Wall ) as Shabbat (Sabbath) began. It was so great to begin the Sabbath two weeks in a row in Jerusalem at the Kotel!  I left the kotel plaza and walked around the city wall to the Jaffa Gate.   I stumbled across the fenced dig site I had read about as Mt. Zion excavation by UNC Charlotte and James Tabor in what is thought the Essene section of the City in the times of Yeshua.  Then as the sun was setting I walked by the Church of the Domitian on Mt. Zion and followed the city wall around to Jaffa Gate Plaza.   All along the way were young people scattered playing Frisbee or talking to their friends.

Today we took a taxi to the Mt.of Olives and walked back to the city through the Lion's Gate. We also took in most of the archaeological portion of the Israel Museum and the Dome of the Book which holds portions of the Dead Sea scrolls, and explains their story.   We spent our whole time in the Israeli Museum looking at the artifacts of ancient Judah and Israel which included seeing the actual KQ Ostracon.

Tomorrow morning it’s back to the dig for our week two and the final week of the season. This week we will have less than half of what the dig team has been for the first four weeks. 
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