jess mcghie

22 August 2016

ISRAEL | PART ONE



this blog post (s) has been a long time in the coming and I'll let you in on a little secret - I have the memory of zee goldfish. so if you've ever emailed/messaged/txt me, and I've not emailed back it's honestly not intentional. I just forget all da tings. ok, now on to israel! I wrote this blog post in my notebook while on a bus from france to germany (it's amazing what non-existent wifi will do to a person amiright) in may. it actually felt so amazing to just write on paper all that I could remember about israel and what happened and what we did and who we met. so, without further ado (aka, all da waffle), here are approximately 3,600 photos. that's a joke, guys. there's only 3,400, gosh whaddya take me for.

for those of you who don't know, I went to israel with my family, another family from our church and my favourite travelling buddy payton. we went for two weeks, and explored a bunch of stuff! in the first half of our trip (I totally had to refer to payton's israel post coz she remembers every place we visited, so yes, I stole this list.), we saw the old city, the church of the holy sepulchre, gethsemane gardens, the mount of olives, the tomb of the prophets, the western wall, ben yehuda market, the tunnels underneath the western wall, the israel museum, and mount zion. phew. and that's only half! if you wanna see it all in video-form as well, petie and I vlogged our trip and stuck it all on our mind the gap channel, so go check those out (after you've finished this post, obvs, gosh.)!

israel was a place I'll never forget. I don't quite know what I expected, but on all counts it exceeded my expectations. the warmth, the spices, the markets, the old city, the friendly people, the delicious food, the smoothie bars on every corner, the humus (ok so, this post is basically gonna be about humus), the diversity, the colours, the country. 
being able to walk where Jesus walked and be where He has been was incredible - words don't even describe and honestly it's still kinda sinking in. but of course the city and the country have changed since Jesus' time and what you read so often in the Bible is more often than not, super different when you see it today. we stayed in  jerusalem for most of our two weeks and ugh I just fell in love with that place! the etiquette is so different to the british etiquette and I loved it. I've been to a few countries and seen a few places and all that jazz, but being in a place so different was refreshing and humbling and wonderful and almost addictive. when you walk through the markets, your senses are almost assaulted all at once with all of the smells, sounds, sights and things you just wanted to touch and feel. you could smell all the spices and sweet dates and fresh pomegranate juice and roasted nuts and citrus fruit teas. you could hear market stall owners shouting at you to come try their foods - wanting you to try their humus (which I more than gladly did) or olives or dried fruits. or they may even tell you that you like exactly like angelina jolie just to get you to buy something (wink wink payton)! you feel people pushing past you, the muggy heat underneath the market canopy, all the soft cashmere scarves that are hanging everywhere, the smooth olive wood bowls and imperfectly carved beaded necklaces.