Wednesday, November 11, 2009


The Tiberias dig is over but I don't want to leave the subject without showing you where I slept (or tried to) for several weeks.
For a big smile you should really click on the first photo.

It is the backside of my hotel/hostel, part of which had been torn off!
Fortunately construction of the new addition, the loud pouring of cement, started only on the evening I left.

The front is a little better, with some of the Old Tiberias basalt stone.
My dormitory room was on the top floor.

I grabbed the single bed on the side and let the backpacker girls have the four close-to-each-other beds. New roommates came and went; big turnover.

One day a big windstorm brought down the ceiling panel in our bathroom. Luckily the shower curtain rod caught it.
Yep, conditions were spartan.
The "grown-ups," the mostly older volunteers who came to the dig from abroad, stayed in the nicer hotel just up the street. But they were willing and able to pay for it. We had lunch and dinner at their hotel.
It was in the 90s F (low 40s C) most of the time, even in October-November. Most of the young folks in my room were anti-airconditioning. With the windows open, you could hear traffic on the busy streets below all night.
But when you have to rise at 4:00 a.m. you learn to sleep through almost anything.

The view to the south was the old cemetery with tombs of basalt.
A post on that is planned.

I spent lots of time hanging out the window, savoring the different moods of Tiberias, in haze, in sun, once even in rain.
The old Greek Orthodox monastery was nice to look at. I even managed to get inside the church once (a post will follow). The old monk does not open the gate very often.

The Sea of Galilee was right across the street. Here is a rare clear view of the Golan Heights on the eastern shore of the lake.

Tiberias attracts many Israeli and foreign tourists and pilgrims.
From my simple dorm room I could see the real hotels. So many, so big. Too big.
I miss the old days when we dig volunteers used to sleep as a crew, all in big tents or in the former stable of an old monastery or in straw bungalos or in a big old kibbutz house.


Caprice- said...

Your hotel dormitory looks sparse indeed! I have stayed at Hostels with more to offer- LOL! I love your posts, sounds like you enjoyed your dig even with little sleep. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

I always enjoy your photos, Dina. These were exceptional. But, you know what, I would prefer to sleep in the modern hotels.

FA said...

Hi Dina, I never tire of seeing scriptural sights through your eyes.

You really roughed it. Although, I'm sure that these were small incoveniences compared to the opportunities. But, then again, you strike me as a very adaptable and flexible person.

Cloudia said...

You are just a wonderful person for all you do, and for the posts that bring us along. this is consistently one of the Best Blogs!

Shalom & Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

jedaen said...

may the light of peace shine through your life and through the life of your journal on this most solemn day......

Petrea said...

The Golan Heights, Tiberias, the Sea of Galilee--these have always been such big, mythical names to me. It's wonderful to see them through your eyes.

I'd miss the old days, too.

Dimple said...

That dorm/hostel is quite something! I hope the construction, when finished, will improve the living arrangements!
Thanks for the photo tour, I appreciate seeing the places Jesus might have walked. I imagine Him teaching somewhere on the Golan Heights...but maybe that's wrong, my geography leaves a lot to be desired!

Turquoise Diaries said...

Beautiful post and a great experience..

Spiderdama said...

Wonderful post and great pictures;-)

Nathalie said...

Dina what a remarkable post.

That top photo is dead scary!

The big hole next to your hotel with all the cables hanging out would probably have freaked me out. I trust that builders know what they're doing... but what if they don't?

I really enjoyed reading about your housing conditions, the relationships with the younger crowds (the anti-airconditioning spirit is something I hadn't heard of before). A great insight into the life of a volunteer digger. Good on you for being so accommodating and resilient!

Hilda said...

Your spartan accommodations are quite common here, which is fine especially if you don't plan on staying in it much. Why spend for something you won't use or enjoy? :) And in your hostel's case, the view of the Sea of Galilee more than makes up for the spareness, I think!

The temperature, however, is another thing altogether. Sooo hot! We get 40Cs only on our worst summers. I hope it's a little better in Jerusalem Hills.

Anonymous said...

I think you must have had a good time as the variety of photos shows it.

jedaen said...

beautiful Dina, what a romantic sacred passtime unearthing the past.You are fortunate to be who you are such an adventurous spirit.

Reader Wil said...

So the pulling down of the hotel has nothing to do with the dig?
Great post Dina. Your life is both adventurous and very tiring. I wouldn't be able to get up that early!

Anonymous said...

I'd want the old days back too. I hope you didn't have to endure some deep snorers

Kay said...

I'm rather for the nice hotel with private bathrooms myself, too. Sorry about that. Art and Jon would love to join you in those tents though.