Hannah and Je together

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Second Holy Land Trip – Fourth Day – Museums

Today is my Museum day.  I wanted use the public transportation in Jerusalem.  I looked for the way in Google Maps.  I went to the Light rail station and bought two tickets at the vending machine.  But I was not able to find the bus stop for 66, so I came back to the Jaffa Gate for the Tourist Information Centre, and they taught me different road from the Google Maps.

Jerusalem Bus

Jerusalem Bus

So I got on the bus.  I gave the ticket to the bus driver, but he did not let me go back of the bus.  He said something, and I guessed he was saying to pay.  So I explained him that I bought the ticket this morning and never used yet.  But he was kept saying “Ofaam! Ofaam!”  And he did not understand me nor speak English.  We were not able to communicate each other because of language barrier.

Then a few people from behind came to help me.  They were all young and wearing kipa, so I guess they are Jewish.  One of them said to the bus driver that he would pay for me.  I was so moved.  It is not about the money.  The bus fare is less than $2.  It is not much, but just that he offered the small kindness to stranger was big thing to me.  But I refused because I had money.  The other guy translated for me and I found out that I must use the ticket within hour and half after purchase.  That is kind of stupid I think.  So I’d better use cash on the bus.

I was surrounded by several Jews who offered me kindness competitively.  I paid the fare by cash, and everything was settled.  God bless them!  But I had one more problem.  The bus announcement was only in Hebrew, never in English.  I had no idea where to get off.  So I asked another guy next to me (middle-aged man wearing kipa).  I was not asked the driver because he does not speak English.  The middle-aged guy brought me to the bus driver, and asked him for me in Hebrew.  Then he asked me where I am from, and I said that I am from Chicago.  Then he and I had pleasant conversation about Chicago until he got off the bus.

Last night I was insulted twice by Palestinians, and this morning I received kindness from the Jews.  If you had exactly same experience as I, then whose friend would you be?  McCormick people and I know about the Israeli government’s ill-treatment over Palestinians, but how many people do you think know all about that?  Even the people who know, they would be pro-Jewish and anti-Palestinian having such experience.

Signet Ring

Signet Ring

I went to the Bible Land Museum first.  The picture above is a signet ring.  This is the combination of passport, credit card and property certificate in the ancient world.  Judah may have been wearing and handed something like this when he went into his daughter-in-law.

Sumerian Mythology

Sumerian Mythology

This is the Sumerian mythology about the creation of humankind.  The gods were so busy, stressed and tired of taking care of the world after creation.  Even they expressed their frustration to each other.  Then they created human so that they can get relieve of the work.  So according to the Sumerian mythology, we are just free labours for them.

Family Idols

Family Idols

And the museum also said that this is what Rachel might have hidden from her father.  And if so, I guess she was desperate to be pregnant, because they are all emphasizing woman’s sexuality, which is fertility.

Riding Man

Riding Man

This is a man riding.  And we can see his sexual organ clearly.  And look at the picture below too.

Ancient Women

Ancient Women

I think they were not ashamed of sex and they did not try to hide it in the ancient world.  Then why we came to bashing the sex?  Because we oppress the sex, it grows in the weird way, and we have a whole lot of porn industry, and even Hollywood depicts sex in the wrong way.

Lachish Battle

Lachish Battle

Then I went to the Israel Museum.  I did not take much photo here.  In both museums, I borrowed the audio guide device, and I literally listened to the explanation one by one, not even missing one.  I focused on learning rather than photo.  The above one is the Lachish battle, where I am going to dig from next week.

Shrine of the Book

Shrine of the Book

I also went to the Shrine of the Book.  By the January trip, the McCormick group all know what the shape means.  But today, I notice that the four corners of the shrine set is exactly look like the four corners of the altar.

I had so good time in the museum.  When the museum announced for its closing, I was surprised because I thought I just spent a few hours (I thought it was around 1pm).  And then I realised that I was not wearing my sunglasses any longer.  I had no idea what happened to my sunglasses.

Yaffo Street

Yaffo Street

Then I got on a bus, not the 66 but 7.  I was supposed to get off at Jaffa street.  I thought I would get the word Jaffa in Hebrew, but I missed.  Someone next to me poked and told me to get off.  Why did I miss it?  Because the announcement said “Yaffo,” not “Jaffa.”  On the map issued by the Israeli government (tourism), it clearly says Jaffa, but the street sign says Yaffo.

Light Rail

Light Rail

This is the light rail in Jerusalem New City.  Jerusalem New City just looks like any other American or European city.

And I also realised that even in the Old City, Jewish quarter is much more clean and modern than the other quarters such as Muslim or Armenian.  And it also has more sunlight while the other parts of the old city is quite covered and lacks sunlight.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Israel Trip Seventh Day: Museum Day

Today was a Museum Day.

Israel Museum

Israel Museum

We went to Israel Museum, and just right after the gate, there was marvelous display of Jerusalem in around A.D 60s.

Jerusalem Model 1:50 Scale

Jerusalem Model 1:50 Scale

The centre is the Herod’s temple on the temple mount. Right side of the temple mount is the pinnacle (both corners), and on the upper left of the temple mount is the Antonia Fortress where people think Pontius Pilate stayed, and consequently the Via Dolorosa begins here.

Part of the Ancient Column

Part of the Ancient Column

We spent quite a long time there, and we headed to the shrine of the book. On the short way, where were a few displays and I was told the one above is from 2 century B.C.

Shrine of the Book Main building

Shrine of the Book Main building

This is outside of the shine. The white dome symbolises the sons of the light which is the Essenes of Qumran. But I think Israelis think it is for themselves. And the waters surrounding it means that they are ritually clean.

The other side of the Shrine of the Book

The other side of the Shrine of the Book

The other side of the shrine is the dark wall which means the sons of the darkness.

Shrine of the Book by the entrance

Shrine of the Book by the entrance

Inside of the shrine, some of the dead sea scrolls are displayed. There are also many cool things related to dead sea scroll and/or Aleppo Codex. But the photo shooting was not allowed.

Bible Land Museum

Bible Land Museum

Then we went to Bible Lands Museum. They had special display for Biblical texts and books. We saw many earliest Bibles in various languages. I was told that their next display will be in Vatican. Again, the photo shooting was not allowed.

Holy Snow in Jerusalem

Holy Snow in Jerusalem

On the first day in Israel, I was told that Jerusalem had snow earlier which is very unusual. And today, I saw some of the remains. Well, in Winnipeg, Canada, snows remains until August in snow dump site. The other day at the St. Anne’s Church, the father said that he had hard time removing the snow because there was nowhere to buy or get shovel.

Holocaust Museum

Holocaust Museum

We went to Holocaust Museum. It was actually my second time in the holocaust museum since I’ve been to the one in Washington D.C. And over again, the photo shooting was not permitted.

Ribbis for Human Rights

Rabbis for Human Rights

Our next visit was the ‘Rabbis for Human Rights,’ and we listened to Rabbi Arik Ascherman. It was quite interesting time. And it is so good to see some of the Jewish people working and fighting for the Palestinian. The problem is that they are just minority.

Ribbi Arik Ascherman

Rabbi Arik Ascherman

If I have chance, I would like to write another post about my short research. I expected the Arab countries helping Palestinian a lot, because they always blame Israel and they speak same Arabic, and believes in same Islam, and the same race. But my expectation betrayed me. The surrounding arabic countries have been worse than Israel.

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.