Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Kabbutz Lavi and NE Israel

For the past two nights we've stayed in the hotel of a kabbutz, which is just like the ol' farm commune I worked at for a summer. This one is spiritual in that it's Jewish, and all 150+ families live together and pool incomes and share expenses. These were started as farming communities but not everyone is a farmer anymore.

While the hotel is nice, I'm bummed we haven't been able to eat much of their produce during their buffet breakfast and dinners. The mangos and avocados and fresh milk, etc sounds wonderful, yet my guess is that we've only had their grapefruit and olives. While the grapefruit is tasty, it's not as sweet as those ruby reds from Texas in April!! I have no olives to compare. 

As for sites, we drove to Magdelen, home to Mary Magdelon. Then we took a short boat ride in the Sea of Galilee, the only body of fresh water in Israel, and where Jesus walked on the water. 

We also visited Beatitudes and capernium, and the church where Jesus fed his feast of fish and bread and wine. 

Up and down the rolling mountains reminds me a lot of the Rockies with dry climate and rocks everywhere. Our guide Hilik, aka the soccer butcher, pointed out Lebanon and Jordan, and we got right up to the border of Syria.

 We also watched a baptism in the Jordan river, home to disgustingly large catfish that are deemed non kosher, which is why they got so big in the first place. 

The Jordan river is actually more like a creek! 

We have three people with our group who are from Brazil, and today the only one of them who could translate English to Portuguese got sick. The couple tried to listen to Spanish tours, as they knew some Spanish too. Who knew how important a translator could be! I tried to say a few things but our guide spoke much more in depth than my Spanish allowed. So when trying to say 'he said water...to here...winter'...it probably still didn't make any sense to them, or I confused them more! 

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