Day 3 Mitzpe Ramon to Jerusalem via the Dead Sea

Driver and Navigator in front of the Westeen Wall, Jerusalem

A young man from the Foster Home enjoying my car
Another day in the desert (our last as we head north tomorrow). Again it was hot and dusty. My pretty black Porsche looks more like a full-blown rally car than a lovely street car. 

We started the day on twisty single lanes through desert passes; the Porsche loved them. We headed east toward the Dead Sea reaching it around Masada. From there we headed north toward Jerusalem.

Our morning stop was at a very meaningful place for Elad and Ronit Shraga, one of our hosts. It is a community of children that have been taken from their parents on account of physical abuse, sexual abuse or abandonment. The student population is made up of Jews, Ethiopian Jews, Arabs and Druse. These children will never be returned to their parents and the teachers and administrators of this community have become surrogate parents for these young people. The Shragas have adopted this place and have supported it with money and time....very inspiring.

From here, we continued north parallel to the Dead Sea. We stopped for lunch at Kalia Beach where some of our rally folks took a dip in the Dead Sea. I did this many years ago and it is a strange feeling. The Dead Sea has so much sodium (and hence no fish) that it is impossible to sink in the just float on the surface. The water does have a greasy feel so one needs a good shower after you get out of the Sea.

Ilene on her Mission at the Western Wall
After lunch, we had a short drive into Jerusalem, by way of East Jerusalem. The distance was only about 40-50km, but it took forever because of the traffic. As you may know, Jerusalem sits in a small array of hills so one has to climb from the Dead Sea (the lowest place on earth) up to Jerusalem. With terrible traffic, it was stop and go and many of our cars overheated.....some had to be towed in. Our car park tonight is at the Waldorf Astoria in Jerusalem and I visited there tonight and many of the cars are in various stages of disrepair. Heat and hill climbing are beginning to take a toll on our very old cars.

My little Porsche struggled a bit; running very hot, but we made it.

Upon arrival in Jerusalem, Ilene and I went directly to the Western Wall. Ilene has several friends suffering from severe diseases and she went to the Wall to say prayers for her friends and put messages into the Wall, as is the custom. I, too, offered a few prayers.

Tomorrow is a very early start (7:30am) made more difficult as tomorrow in the first day of Daylight Savings Time in Israel. As a result, I'm going to end here in order to get a few hours of sleep before we hit the road again.