Haifa and Akko

Trip Start Apr 22, 2011
Trip End May 15, 2011

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Monday, May 9, 2011

The group visits Caesarea this morning on the way to Haifa, but I miss this site in order to take an early train to Akko. The Baha'i Shrine there is open to the public from 9am until noon, and I want to visit it again for the first time since my Baha’i Pilgrimage in 1973. I arrive in Akko about 8:50am, and get to the Shrine by 9:05am. I arrange to have a taxi waiting for me at 9:45am so I can catch the 10:15 train to Haifa, and rush to spend a few minutes in this peaceful spot.

The taxi is there as expected, and I arrive at the Baha’i Shrine in Haifa just at 11am as the sirens go off for another minute of silence in memory of those who gave their lives for the State of Israel. Again, like last night at 8pm, everybody stops whatever they are doing and stands quietly in meditation while the sirens are blowing. Then life returns to normal.

After visiting the Shrine on Mt. Carmel I taxi to the top of the hill where I meet my group. They are taking the tour of the Baha’i Gardens that starts at the top of the mountain and descends the steps toward the Shrine in the middle of the mountain. The gardens are lovely and peaceful, and rather astonishing in their scope.

After the tour we fight traffic to Akko for a tour of the old Crusader Castle, and the streets of the Ottoman Fortress that was constructed on top of it. I have a dinner engagement with some Baha’i friends I used to work with in Chicago, and who are now working at the Baha’i World Center in Haifa. We have a wonderful evening catching up on a few decades since we last saw each other. There are fireworks tonight in celebration of Independence Day. I catch up with the group as they are having dinner, get some nighttime photos of the Shrine, and head for bed.
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Anne Perry on

Dan! I am thrilled with your news and am "with you" there, in some way. Blessings upon you!

bruce on

this out look is good.

Janet on

Hey, friend -- I am SO jealous -- when we FINALLY went on pilgrimage in December 2009, the work on renewing the golden dome of the Shrine of the Bab was in full swing, including a full tarp over all the scaffolding -- so, no golden-domed Queen of Carmel for ME!! Looked like an army bunker.
So, these old friends you got to see for dinner -- wouldn't be Paul & Marcia, would they?!? We had SUCH a great time seeing them -- we had daughter Amy with us and their youngest was visiting from university in the US, so a good time was had by all. We also saw Geoff & Amy -- did you? Well -- thanks for the memories, and I am so happy for you that you got to go see all the changes wrought since 1973!!! :)
and -- of course, I have read every post and looked at every photo -- love it all -- love "going on tour" with you, wherever you are in the world!

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