At breakfast we were greeted by quite a surprise. Dad was sporting a pair of the most disturbing poodle leg socks, which brought us considerable joy. Sadly, no photo. Once we were on the road we headed in the direction of Mount Nebo. This is the spot where Moses stood and saw the land promised to the Children of Israel. (more…)
Highway 40 through the Negev was seriously spectacular! Clare even took us on a cool little side journey to see two huge craters. It was so dry and arid, but so picturesque. Everything was closed in the tiny town we planned to stop in for lunch, but luckily we had some left over food in our packs, so we stopped for a nice little picnic in the park. Eventually we made it to Eilat but not before stopping once or twice along the way to take in the magic of the scenery. Feeling pretty beat from the long driving day we sussed out our airbnb apartment and grabbed some breakfast things for dinner from one of the only corner stores we could find that was actually open. It took quite a search to find too.
Dad had us up bright and early on Tuesday as he was only mildly excited about the underground western wall tour he had booked us in for! It was pretty amazing and genuinely a lot less archaeologically nerdy than I had expected. We did the tour with a guide and even though I’d been down there before it was still really interesting. We saw a 600t stone lifted 16m into place using who knows what? We also saw a ramp up to the top level of the temple mount had been built by Herod as an aqueduct. (more…)
The bus trip North was an easy one with no connections. The countryside was pretty barren and dry. When we arrived at Peniche we were able to be picked up and given a lift to our apartment with our airbnb host, Marco. He was a really nice guy and joked about Aussies and their long holidays “I hate Australians, do they ever work?”
As happens when you travel a bit I guess, we had gotten pretty lazy when it comes to looking everything up before we arrive in a new country. Usually the result of this slackness is two very frustrated humans. In Portugal we fluked it! We arrived at the airport and headed to information to find out about busses. “The next bus leaves in 15 minutes”. Perfect. So we jumped onto the bus to Faro city centre. From here we waited a total of ten minutes for a connecting bus all the way to Albufeira. It was the last bus trip we were a little worried about as it was getting to be late arvo on a Saturday when we arrived at Albufeira and started asking around for the last leg trip. Amazingly the bus was sitting right along side the one we arrived on, ready to go. We were stoked.
We had a great time with the Scots. They were always up for a chat and found our van pretty funny too. Think they mostly enjoyed the fact that we weren’t English though…
A Scotsman walking through a field, sees a man drinking water from a pool with his hand. The Scotsman shouts ‘ Awa ye feel hoor thatâs full Oâ coos Sharn’ (Don’t drink the water, it’s full of cow crap.) The man shouts back ‘I’m English, Speak English, I don’t understand you’. The Scotsman shouts back ‘Use both hands, you’ll get more in.‘
Hard to believe, but Fez was even more crazy than Marrakech! From the second we jumped off the train at 2am (not literally this time) it was nuts. We caused a massive argument amongst the cab drivers by not using the first guy we spoke to and loaded our bags in while they all yelled at each other in Arabic. Our driver was pretty sheepish two minutes later when he realised he had a flat tire and that we needed to hop in one of the other taxis.
As we pulled into the crazy bustling streets of Marrakech it was time to part ways with Ibrahim. He had been good fun but really up and down thanks to Ramadan. He was cranky and tired one minute and the next cracking gags. Like when Jared first tried his turban on, Ibrahim spotted him and said “Hello Muhammad, where is Fatima”. I lost it! After dropping the kids off he left Clare and I at the main square, Jamaa El-Fnah. And after asking what riad we were staying in, gave us rough directions through the old town (or Medina) streets and told us to look out for a number 7 over the door. Sounded easy enough.
By the time we had dropped the kids off (not by the pool), then found our accommodation (which included me running off to find wifi to call the owner and confirm her unit number, which Clare enjoyed a lot, except the opposite) we were smashed. So we just grabbed some pizza from across the road and passed out.
The drive to Sitges was super quick and this time it wasn’t due to Jem’s disregard for the speed limit. We met our airbnb host, who happened to speak zero English, which wasn’t a great combination with our zero Spanish. It was heaps fun trying to sort out house rules, deposits, check out times and whatever else we needed using noises and hand gestures but we actually did alright.