Saturday, September 15, 2012

Peaceful (yes, Peaceful!) Morning Walk in the New City of Jerusalem

Lest you think the entire mideast in one huge rock-throwing fire-starting mob (that's what Michael says it looks like on the news), or if you think everything here is thousands of years old, come with me on a walk to the "New City" that I took early this morning. I needed to go to the ATM which is in the modern Mamilla Mall, right next to the Old City. I needed shekels (Israeli money) because I am planning a taxi ride on Sunday to a Rosh Hashana service, so went to find the ATM. This picture was taken while walking along the road from my school, walking beside the Old City walls, the tower you see is called the Tower of David.
Here I am in the courtyard by Jaffa Gate, the opening you see leads into the Old City, but walking across the courtyard in the other direction you see this:
Looking down over the courtyard at the highway that goes underneath it.
And just the other side of the courtyard in front of Jaffa Gate are these stairs leading down into the Mamilla Mall which is just a couple years old.
This is an outdoor mall, ordinarily very busy, but it's only about 9 a.m., there's only a couple restaurants open so far.
This mall has literally dozens of sculptures and statues that have to do with music!  So here's some Israeli art for you...this one caught my eye because of the keyboard in it:)
Another piece of art - gotta love the harpist with her pink blouse.
The streets of the mall, perfectly clean and peaceful.
Dozens and dozens of stores, a lot of American name brands there as well.
Of course I liked the grand piano, too.
 Three clowns playing a tune....
Well, I've never seen anyone play a guitar quite like this, but maybe that's how they do it in Israel...
OK, so I did see one soldier standing outside the Pharmacy. But that's not unusual. He's the only one I saw in the entire huge mall area. I actually like seeing the soldiers around, makes you feel more secure.
 I have my shekels and am leaving the mall now, here's the familiar skyline of the Old City walls and the Tower of David as I come up the steps out of the mall.
 Looking the other direction to the buildings on the slopes across the Hinnom Valley.
 Walking past Jaffa Gate again.  Looks peaceful in there, too.
Walking back home, the large building in the center is the King David hotel, the most luxurious and well-known hotel in Israel, where many diplomats stay.
 Still walking, looking across the valley I see the Yemin Moshe neighborhood with the WINDMILL, do you see it?  One can easily identify Yemin-Moshe neighborhood, buillt in the late 1800's, by the large windmill at the top of the hill overlooking the Hinnom Valley on King David Street. The windmill, was originally built to serve the milling needs of the residents of Montefiore's new developments (built to encourage Jews to move out of the exceedingly crowded Old City), but it was never operational because of the lack of wind where it was situated. Hmm, that was poor planning:)  There's lots of wind on our campus!  Today there is a restaurant at the base of the windmill.
One more pic...This is very near our gate, looking down over the valley you see this huge outdoor theater, many hundreds of seats. They frequently have concerts there, usually late at night, and they have the loudest PA system ever. I often go to sleep with the sound of the base booming from there. This was not here last semester.  (I have often thought I'd love to go over there, turn on the PA system and worship the Lord with it on full blast:)  OK, now I'm back home, a perfectly peaceful and beautiful walk in the city of Jerusalem!!

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