7:52 pm
11,125 steps
4.71 miles

We avoided any rain today, although it looked like it might be headed our way around lunchtime.  It was another full day, with our energies and attention around the ministry of Jesus in Galilee.  It was, as always, most interesting and impacted those in the group.  We got a bit of a planned late start, but then there were those waiting to check out of the hotel, so we were not on the road until after 8:30.

Our first stop (after picking up Andre at a close round-about) was up toward the northern end of the lake at the Mt. of the Beatitudes.  The parking lot was full of buses, but the site is large enough that though it was crowded, it was not overwhelming.  We took some time to overview the area and then read the Beatitudes.  Andre gave us some free time to wander and/or reflect.

Back on the bus and down to Nof Ginnosaur four trek out onto the Sea.  Guess what?  The parking lot was overflowing with buses.  Surprise!  We didn’t have time to see the “Jesus Boat” before our ride in the “Jesus Boat” – so we ran through and got our tickets and headed to the dock.  It too was crowded.  Surprise!

We had a lovely time out on the water.  It was still calm (it was only 10 am) but there must have been 10 “Jesus Boats” on the water.  We got an Andre overview and had some quiet time and I read the story of the calming of the Sea.  Then we were back on the shore and headed off to somewhere new.

This time we went to Magdala.  This was just m second visit to this new dig, and it was interesting. Andre didn’t guide us and we joined another group.  The Irish accent from this guide was interesting, but she was a bit long winded.  The tour of the synagogue was spot on.  By the time we were in the newly constructed Catholic Church, ther was a bit too much info for my taste.  We were supposed to breeze thru four small chapels before heading downstairs to the art of the woman healed by just touching the garment of Jesus.  But she was spending 15 minutes in each chapel.  Andre rescued us by moving her along (we only visited two of the four chapels) and then went downstairs.  That piece is stunning.  Even there we spent some lovely time – but still time – in that space.  It is lovely and she was engaging and loved the Lord without a doubt.

We were finally headed back ot the bus and going to lunch. Yay.  We ate at a place in downtown Tiberius where I had never eaten.  It was located barely south of the Leonardo Plaza Hotel.  It was built inside a 19th century building.  So just the architecture was interesting.  I just cared that it was not too noisy – and it was cool.  The options were, of course, St. Peter’s fish, chicken, and kabob.  I chose the kabab –and it was lamb.  And it was very delicious.

After lunch we headed back to the bus, which wasn’t really all that close.  And, that journey required us to navigate a particularly rough patch of stones.  Well, I watched Janice Bellows in front of me struggle…and struggle….and then fall.  Yikes.  That was tough to watch and even tougher to do.  She bounced a bit, but only struck her chin.  There was no blood, unbelievably actually.  She laid there for a bit and we encouraged her to relax.  Soon it was evident that her arms were pretty scraped up.  There was blood.  We got her back to the bus and she decided that she should just go back to the hotel and clean up and rest for the afternoon.  That was wise – and we had to drive right in front of our hotel anyway.  We dropped her off and were on our way again.

Next stop was Bethsaida.  We pulled out the 6’ map and did some orientation.  Then visited the site (we were the only bus there, surprise!).  It was warm, but the coolest I’ve ever experienced at that sunny spot.

Back onto the bus and off to Capernaum.  Lots of buses again – but not really as many as I’ve seen before.  Surprise.  We had a lovely visit to the site.  We are getting tired by now for sure.  There was one more stop, however.

Last visit for the day – and it was a nice conclusion for the day – was at Tabgha.  Here just met His disciples on a number of occasions – the last time was after His resurrection, when He fed them breakfast and challenged them to continue to follow.  We had some time to reflect and then we headed back to our hotel.

It was a little dark and rain was certainly possible.  But we haven’t had any yet today.  I think (and hope) the chance for rain passes today and that sunny days are ahead.  Some blue sky would be lovely.

Dinner was normal and delicious. So now I fight to stay awake and finish up this journal.  Nothing fancy tonight.  I’m too tired for long stories.

Oh, we did check on Janice right when we got back to the hotel.  She was resting, but in great spirits and should be able to rejoin the group in the morning. She was at dinner and looked great.  We are all looking forward to heading farther north tomorrow.  Chorazin, Hazor, Dan, and the view into Syria.  I hear there are tanks these days.  Should be interesting.

I’m done for tonight. All is well.  And my feet still ache.  But a night of sleep should do wonders for all of that.

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Luann says... (Reply)
"My favorite part of the day (besides going outside at 5 am in the pitch dark to watch the sunrise and listen to the waves and birds and imagine all of the early mornings the disciples spent on the lake), was Magdala. I loved our guide, Celine, and could have listened to her all day. I loved being able to be so close to the synagogue they are excavating and imagining Jesus there, in that space, being handed the scrolls, and reading from Isaiah. I loved her introduction to each of the art pieces and the meaning the artist was conveying. I loved that the women in Jesus’s life are being honored and Im so grateful to each of them for the way they sacrificed and lived out their faith in tangible ways, so that I might know the love of Jesus. I’d love to go back and spend more time there. " (4/27/18)