So, so excited! For the first time, one of my friends (who wasn't on Birthright, chill Jordana and Greenidge) is coming to join me in Israel. This is major for me because I get to show a friend what I have been doing for the last 2 years and why I love this place so many people don't understand!
Background quickly: C-Smith and I see each other at dinner in SF, she says, "Jess, what is Israel like?" I try not to ramble, which is hard to do cause I LOVE telling people that Israel isn't bombs and camels, and give her the low down on the people and culture. She thinks it sounds great and tells me she would love to visit. I have pretty much stopped listening when people say they want to come visit, I wait for them to have a ticket to Ben Gurion in hand. Well, cut to the next morning when Christin texts me she just booked her ticket. Wow...that is someone I want to travel with!!! So here we go!
Then, here comes the interesting part. C-Smith and I liked to push ourselves to new limits and experience brand new things. This took on a whole new meaning when we got to Jerusalem. We ended up booking our hotel inside the Old City. I thought this whole time I knew the Old City quite well, including all the quarters. I know the Jewish Quarter like the back of my hand, but when it comes to the Arab/Muslim Quarter I am not as well versed. Very long story short, Christin and I ended up staying smack-dab in the middle of the Muslim Quarter. It was an unforgettable experience that took me far out of my comfort zone, but in the end was an amazing eye opener. Everyone was friendly, helpful and SO ready to talk and tell their story. It changed a lot of preconceived opinions I had and now feel a little shallow for having.
More to come from all the Quarters and a few more spots in Jerusalem...before we head to GREECE!!