Excited to be chosen for the EDI GSL Experience in Israel

Monday, June 24, 2013

The Long Weekend- Lawrence's travels

From Jerusalem to Eilat to Mitzpe Ramon to Beersheba and back!

Hello! Tomorrow Laura and I start at Elwyn, so this past weekend we both decided to do some sightseeing. Laura went to Tel Aviv to visit some family friends. I decided to figure out the bus systems in Israel so that I could travel to Eilat (the southernmost tip of Israel). It is a beach resort town. The temperature reached 104 degrees! I was not ready for that. The beaches were crowded on Shabbat and the mall that was next door was 50% open.
After 2 nights in Eilat, I traveled by bus to Mitzpe Ramon. I was able to visit Makhtesh Ramon (makhtesh means "crater," but this crater was formed through weathering, not an asteroid). I hiked through the top of the crater and took pictures, especially when I saw various ibex. They look like a deer that is the size of a dog.
After seeing the Ramon Crater for a day, I traveled back to Jerusalem by transferring buses in Beersheva. On the bus, I met a 19 year old female Israeli soldier. We talked about the military service in Israel and how weapon laws and protection are much stricter than in the United States. Even at breakfast today, I spoke with a family from Sweden that said they were too afraid to visit the United States because of the lack of gun control. It made me realize what I different world I live in in the United States.

The female worker from the Ramon Crater visitor center showed me where the bus stop was. She said she was going to a wedding in Beersheva. When she started walking away from the bus stop, I asked, "Where are you going, I thought you said you are going to Beersheva too?" And she replied, "I am, but I am going to hitchhike because the bus will make me late." She had a little giggle because she realized that in America, a pretty young female like her would NEVER hitchhike. I do not plan to hitchhike AT ALL just to make that clear, but I find it inspiring that a nation like Israel can be safe enough that people can get into cars with strangers and not worry about guns and violence.
Desert Monitor "showing off his good side" --> he could use some moisturizer!

 Taking the stereotypical "American selfie" picture on a bench at the edge of the Makhtesh
They have 3.5% milk! I'm stunned.

This is an example of what the buses looked like. I feel like I was one of the only tourists on these inter-city buses! We passed through a bunch of military bases and small towns to pick up passengers.

After I arrived at the Beersheva Bus Station, I transferred to a bus that went to Jerusalem and made it back to the apartment safely. Traveling in Israel can be difficult when you do not understand the Hebrew language, but it is definitely possible. If I can do it all on my own, I am sure other people can do it too.

The Yale University "Whiffenpoofs" all-male Class of 2013 A Capella concert

I forgot to mention that last week, I tagged along with one of Laura and my acquaintances to see an A Capella concert at the Jerusalem YMCA. I got a little lost using the bus system trying to find the place, but it happens. The Whiffenpoofs are traveling all around the world to do concerts. Since Laura and I were not able to get tickets for Barbra Streisand's concert (Bill Clinton, Sharon Stone, and Robert DeNiro also showed up here in Jerusalem to celebrate President Shimon Peres's 90th birthday), I feel that the Whiffenpoofs are the next closest thing. At least it is the closest thing in my price range!


  1. Great post Lawrence! Love hearing all your stories and adventures. Good for you! -Erin

  2. Sounds like an amazing weekend Lawrence!! Well done navigating the public transport system on your own! Hope things are going well at Elwyn this week - looking forward to hearing more! :) Ishbel