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Isaac Pel from South Sudan & The City Of David

February 3rd, 2009 No comments
Isaac & George near the Western Wall

Isaac & George near the Western Wall

Hezekiah's Tunnel Entrance

Hezekiah's Tunnel Entrance

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Isaac Coming from Behind in Hezekiah's Tunnel

I met Isaac Pel earlier in my trip in front of the Jaffa gate.  Isaac had been talking to some IDF personnel when I noticed his tribal markings and decided to introduce myself, I thought they were Dinka and he corrected me and told me he was from the Nuer Tribe.  I’ve seen Isaac several times since and today bumped into Isaac on my way to the City of David and asked Isaac to join me on my adventure today and a great day it was for Isaac and I.  The ruins of the City of David where great but I must say the highlight was Hezekiah’s Tunnel.  Here is the sign that greeted us at the entrance:

Hezekiah's Tunnel Warning Sign

Hezekiah's Tunnel Warning Sign

Isaac Just Inside the City of David Park Gates

Isaac Just Inside the City of David Park Gates

Inside Hezekiah's Tunnel

Inside Hezekiah's Tunnel

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George Knee Deep in Hezekiah's Tunnel

Categories: Israel Travel, South Sudanese Tags:

Tel Aviv South Sudanese Friends & Kite Surfing

January 31st, 2009 2 comments
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I visited Santino, Matthew, Simon and Bol in Tel Aviv spending much time talking about the issues they are facing, enjoying some great cookies that Simon’s girlfriend baked and saying my fairwells.

On my way back I stopped by the beach and took some pictures of kite surfers taking advantage of the very windy day.

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Categories: Israel Travel, South Sudanese Tags:

Church of the Holy Sepulchre

January 11th, 2009 No comments

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I spent Shabbot (Friday/Saturday) inside trying to overcome a cold, but today I got up “relatively” early and went to meet one of my South Sudanese friends, Arop, at the Jaffa Gate and then off to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre which after being in Israel, mostly Jerusalem 12 weeks out of the last 12 months, I have yet too see. My work with the South Sudanese has kept me very busy and for good reason. The issues facing the South Sudanese are pressing and serious. As providence would have it, Arop and I did not find each other at the Jaffa Gate and I met “Yanna” from Poland at the Church of the Holy Sepluchre and we set off to go to the Mount of Olives and the Churches there. A very good day. No pictures from the Mount of Olives as my camera battery went dead. churchholysepulchrecandlegirl

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Gaza War & Ashqelon

December 27th, 2008 No comments

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PM: 5 miles north of Gaza in the south part of Ashqelon when I got asked by a park ranger to leave.  I had heard several explosions during the day thinking it was Hamas’s daily barrage of very limited range missles.  At one point I heard an explosion to my left then an explosion to my right which did not make sense and I assumed I misheard somehow.  I was in a park in the South part of Ashqelon when I park ranger began to yell at me in Hebrew. I couldn’t understand him. He kept yelling and yelled at some others who didn’t tell me what he was yelling about. I asked some little kids but they just looked at me strange and walked away. So the ranger came up to me and told me the park was closed and I had to leave. I asked him if it was because of the bombing and he said yes. He said go anywhere in Israel but not Ashqelon. He was acting as if this was a big deal but I thought Hamas was throwing bombs their way daily so I didn’t know what the big deal was until I got back to Jerusalem and learned that some of the explosions I had heard was the IDF and not just Hamas. Also that Hamas had longer range missiles that could reach into Ashqelon and by the news reports did.  Besides the explosions I saw numerous Apache helicopters overhead and seemingly over Gaza. Making it back to Jerusalem, I heard gun shots long into the night towards the Old City from where I stay in French Hill. Reportedly tear gas shots to subdue Palestinian rioting.ashqelonsouthshipsashqelonapache

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Nizzan or Nitsan Israel

December 26th, 2008 No comments

Left for Ashqelon which I was told was the place to find some eroded old cities against the shore line on the Mediterranean. After spending an hour just trying to get out of Jeruslam in my little diesal rent-a-car I decided to scrap the back road and go to Tel Aviv then drop straight south the Ashqelon. The southern part of Ashqelon is about 5 miles north of the Gaza strip. The park is my goal which is in the southern part of Ashqelon. I ended up staying the night in Nizzan (Nitsan) just north of Ashqelon.

PM: Picked up a couple who where hitching a ride (they were observing Shabbat) and took them to a restaurant/pub then proceeded to find a camping spot for myself. They invited me to meet with them after I got settled so I spent some time talking with them both. The man was just out of the IDF for a few years and was an underwater demolition officer. He now dives professionally.

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Sophia Visit in Tel Aviv/Jaffa

December 20th, 2008 No comments

telavivchurchsmlsophiaI visited Sophia at the Old Jaffa Hostel, my friend from South Africa who spends months at a time here in Israel. I met Sophia on my first visit and spent time talking to her about many things including my work with the Sudanese in which Sophia has given a lot of good advice.

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