We have arrived! We arrived last night at 10:15 in Jerusalem. We departed from my Uncles house at about 6:00 Tuesday night. Then we drove from there to Melbourne airport. There we ran into a little trouble… we had booked one way tickets to Tel-Aviv and on the Qatar airways screen when we went to check in, a warning appeared on the computer screen saying “a return ticket is required”. If there was no return ticket, we could be deported and Qatar Airlines would be fined 5,000 dollars. So because of that they would not check us in. All because of the word “is” and the chance of losing 5,000 dollars. Finally after much discussion, Qatar airways said that they could check us in as far as Ammon, Jordan, then we would have to collect our baggage and recheck in so it would be Royal Jordanian who would make the decision to take the risk and be responsible if we were deported. So we said our goodbyes, which was very short due to our late check in. We arrived on time and were not late. The customs officer was very nice and understanding. We took off from Melbourne just before 11:00. We then landed in Qatar at 6:00 in morning. We got assistance even though we never asked for it, they just gave it to us (probably due to having Deaf in the family). But it was because of that we found out that we were entitled to a free breakfast and lunch by Qatar because our stay was longer than 5 hours. And after six hours in Qatar we got on a plane to Jordan. It is really an odd feeling when most girls and women around you are wearing a head covering, and a good majority only had their eyes showing and a few were also wearing the veil.
When we arrived in Jordan we had no idea what we needed to do. There was a guy there who was yelling out Tel-Aviv, Tel-Aviv, he asked us if we were going there. We didn’t know what he was up to so we told him no. Another guy asked us if we were going to Tel-Aviv and he was more official looking than the other guy so we said yes and tried to explain our situation he told us to go to a desk, we did and the people told us to go with the man. So after that confusion we did go. And they took us and the other people that were going to Tel-Aviv downstairs. They explained to everyone that they had to search everyone’s luggage, we tried to inform him that we didn’t have ours and that we needed to pick it up then recheck it in. He said that they would go get our luggage and bring it to us. And we found out just a while later that they had to bring everyone’s luggage too. We were all exhausted from the plane rides and waiting in Qatar, we could barely stand and if we could sit could not stay awake for more than a few minutes. When ours arrived, he took us to the side asked us questions and then took us to the front/side of the line. THEN we had to take apart our backpacks piece by piece, we didn’t have to say this is my flashlight, that’s, my shirt, hat etc, etc, etc, we just had to recognize that each item was ours and the big bulky things were just put through an X-ray machine. But it was all for a very good reason, and the people that inspected things were very nice and kind. They had to inspect all check-in luggage because we had gone through Qatar and Jordan and there are many people that would like to slip something inside our luggage such as a bomb, poison, things that are sold on the black market, and basically things that should not be on a plane or enter a country. They were very kind during the whole process, and gave us a glass of cold water afterwards (Very refreshing after having to drink airplane water). We got checked in (no questions about one way ticket) everything went smooth. After that we found out that Israel had sent a team to Jordan to make sure that nothing bad would happen while we’re getting on the plane.
When we got on the plane I don’t think I stayed awake for much more than take off and landing. Erin didn’t even stay awake for take off! I don’t understand how she could sleep through that.
After a 45 min flight we got to Tel-Aviv. There were no problems with customs letting us through, we were one of the first to get through (unusual for my family) there were no problems. We got our bags alright. Then we went outside to get a shurut (I don’t know how it is actually spelled). The driver was nice. It was neat to see Jerusalem sitting on a hill with electric lights. You know how big cities look at night with street lights from far away. That’s what it looked like, but just sitting on hill.
Off topic thought: What would King David have thought if he saw Jerusalem like that?
We finally got to bed at 11-11:30, So it was a late night on top of the fact that we were already exhausted. And guess what……… nope we didn’t sleep in until 10:00 in the morning…… We got up at 6:00 in the morning. We had breakfast at about 8:30, then headed out for a walk. It was like as soon as we stepped out onto the street and started walking our feet just moved on their own and we walked down the same path we did almost everyday when we were here last time. Then after lunch we went to the temple institute but we didn’t go through the museum part, only the gift shop. It had some neat things.
It is so good to be back!
So now here are the pictures
Hostel (looks worse than what is actually is. the mess on the beds is because we just got up when I took this)
Taken at the wall of the old city over looking the Kidron valley
Background Mount of Olives, Buildings just off the Temple mount.
Yahuweh gets the credit for everything. It is because of Him that we got here. So He gets all the Glory and credit