|Directional sign at the top of the Golan; 60km (40 Miles) from Damascus|
We finished. For those of you who have done motorsports, you know that the first goal is to finish and to finish under your own power. We did just that. Six days; 1000 miles; 4 seas; and 3000 years of history.
The day started north to the Lebanese Border and then west to Mt. Hermon, that still had a small contingency of snow. Remember, 48 hours ago we were in a blistering desert heat with not a sign of vegetation in sight. Lots of mountains in the Israeli north and we skipped through lots of mountain passes. The little Porsche liked these roads, but we did have our share of 1st gear turns as we to be climbing all morning. Our route took us through Rosh Pina and Kiryat Shimona (where I am an honorary citizen, but that's a story for another time).
Eventually we reached the Mediterranean coast at Haifa, where we climbed up and down Mt. Carmel. From Haifa we headed south along the coast road parallel to the Mediterranean coast. As we reached the coast the sun came out and it was a glorious day.
Our lunch stop was at the ancient Roman port city of Caesarea. The antiquity authorities are doing a lot of work in Caesarea to make the Romans remains understandable to the ordinary tourist. It is through this port that the Roman Army arrived to subdue the Jewish population and to facilitate commerce with the countries of the east. The Romans traded with the Nabateans (Petra) and the other indigenous tribes in the region to bring scents, spices and exotic cloth from the Far East (including goods from China). The goods were held in Caesarea until they could put on galleons for transport to Rome. Where the Roman Legions went, so did Rome's culture, architecture, and food......as well as their laws and tribunes. Caesarea was their entry in the Middle East and they built a port city worthy of its mission. Two thousand years later much of their handiwork remains.....as a testament to their adventure, courage and their intellect.
Following lunch it was a short drive to the drop-off point for our cars.....and the Holyland 1000 was over.....6 wonderful days of the sights and sounds of the ancient world blended with the miracles of present day Israel.
The car performed perfectly. The weather has cooled a bit and the Porsche likes that. All in all it was a very enjoyable and successful rally.
I want to use this blog to thank our hosts Elad Shraga and Amir Almagor for putting on one of the most amazing tours that I have ever been on. The route, the accommodations, the food...and especially, the participants, were perfect.
And finally......a big shout out to my wife Ilene. She performed admirably as a Navigator and was a great traveling partner.
As always, the reason for doing these rallies is to see others so you might be able to learn about yourself and put your own life back in context. The Holyland 1000 did this for me and I am grateful.
With that, let me say thank you following along on this adventure and may you fill your life with interesting travels and adventures.