Our first day of touring began with something different, waking up early, getting organized and getting out. We managed to pull it off. Little did we realize that this was just the beginning of the command to wake up early. Have I ever mentioned that we are not a family of morning people? Two of my family members manage fine in the morning, they are also glared at by the rest of us.
I cannot talk about morning in Israel without mentioning Israeli breakfasts. Let me just say that there is nothing better on earth than Israeli cottage cheese and fresh tomatoes. Destroy even managed to get over his hatred of tomatoes on the trip. Truly the land of miracles.
We picked up some other tour members and headed off to Caesarea, Zicharon Yaacov, Rosh Hanikra and then to our hotel in Kfar Blum.
Caesarea was interesting. I was last there in 1984-85. The thing that surprised me was that I had expected the cities to have changed I did not realize how much an archeological site could change. The whole Herod thing was beginning to get banged into my head. Tell me something enough times and I may just remember it. Is anyone more ubiquitous in Israel than Herod? Pictures of the Lubavitcher rebbe don’t count. By the way, it was hot. Very, very, very hot.
We went to the the Museum of First Immigrants in Zicharon Yaacov. A little hint – a museum tour guide is not necessary as things are already spelled out very well. By the time the tour ended the kids were bored and hungry which means cranky. We had lunch and then boarded our beautiful air conditioned bus. Let me just say that I loved our bus driver. Not only was he an excellent driver who always greeted us with a warm smile but he also always had the bus cooled off and ready for our arrival.
Next on to Rosh Hanikra. I loved these grottoes when I first saw them and I still love them. We saw a short film first in which I learned about the train track that had been installed there for use during the War of Independence (if my memory serves me correctly). I may have mentioned before that I love water so listening to and watching the ocean slam against those rocks was definitely the highlight of my day.
Next it was on to Kfar Blum. It was so much more than I had expected. I don’t know why I was expecting something along the lines of my Kibbutz Ulpan accommodations, but I was. Glad to be so wrong. It is funny how little things can feel so familiar and take you right back to another place and time. Something about the walkways on the kibbutz took me right back to my days on kibbutz Sarid so long ago. We met up with the rest of our touring party there, had a delicious dinner followed by a nice swim in the kibbutz pool. Then it was bed time. The kids were happy to finally get to hang with their cousins and we were happy to be out of Tel Aviv and touring.
So ended day one of touring.