Friday, June 15, 2007


I would love to put up some of the pictures I have taken, but I am having some difficulties. Decided to bring a different laptop, probably a mistake. We arrived in Haifa, and it is a much bigger place than I remembered.

Probably that is the result of driving around in our own car, versus being driven by a guide. Not every street leads to where you want to go! Yesterday went to the Immigration Camp, which is not one of the major sites, but has a lot of history. It was established in 1939 by the British to hold illegal Jewish immigrants.

Obviously that was a case of disastrously bad timing, as it was then that the situation for European Jewry became critical. The echoes of the holocaust are particularly grim, because the overall layout of the camp is very similar to that of the extermination camps in Europe. There was even a de-lousing facility, which was the first place new inmates were taken.

Of course the British were actually delousing people there, not killing them.

After that we visited the Maritime museum, which has a lot of model ships, which for some reason were more interesting than they usually are. Perhaps because they put up the bios of the model makers? One was a retired officer from the Soviet Navy who made Aliyah in the 90s. Personalized what otherwise are mute objects.

There were models of missile boats, sailing ships, and the Titanic.

Also a case with sextants and marine chronometers which gave me the opportunity to expound to Gus about the solution to the Longitude problem. He was uncharacteristically patient with me.

The history in this area goes back well before 1939 of course. We were in Cesarea a couple days ago. There are ruins on top of ruins there. The archaeologists have to determine whether a piece of marble is from the pagan temple erected in Herod's time, or the Church that replaced it. Neither is evident now, except in outline.

We ate at the restaurant next to the gas station on the way out of town. Fodor's recommends it, and given its location I imagined it would be a relatively quick and cheap place to eat. It was neither, but that was okay because the St Dennis fish (I think it was that) was excellent, with plenty of pepper. There was even a Sushi bar in there. Jeana's eggplant sandwich was a bit salty, perhaps she should have kept the egg sandwich the waitress brought first, a result of confusion in the English words.

Last night we ate at Fettoush in the German colony. Fodor's again proved its value, as the meal was reasonable, excellent, and filling. Can't recall the name, but one dish was grilled chicken and onions on pita bread. I can't tell you what spices were used, but they were the right ones. The lemonade had enough mint in it to make it look like a green shake.

Yes, I am not much of a vegetarian anymore ...

Israelis definitely have a different attitude towards smoking. The internet cafe here (the one on Yaffe road by the Port Inn, marked with the internationally recognized @ sign over the door) is of course not non-smoking, so I was not surprised to detect smoke drifting my way.

I was a bit surprised to see that the source was two obviously very pregnant women.


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