It’s that time again when I am about to expose myself, my lack of knowledge and my inability to retain information. It’s time to take a trip north with overseas visitors. These visitors are not 1st timers so I can’t use my usual trick of talking a lot and saying very little, they are also more likely to catch me out in a white lie. These visitors are my parents and next week we will be going back to their favourite part of Israel, the Galilee.
I can wholly rely on husband’s knowledge of all things geographical, historical and social on our trip but when we get to the Christian sites,of which there are a lot in that part of Israel, he always turns to me.
I am not a religious person, if you had to put a label on it (me) I am Christian. I would like to think I am spiritual but I’m not convinced that I can even award myself that title. As a child I went to Sunday school at the local Methodist church because my Mum was religious and my Dad, a staunch agnostic, needed the peace on a Sunday morning. I have the children’s Bibles to prove I attended but can I remember more than a short smattering of the scriptures? Ummm no. In fact now that I live in the Holy Land it’s shamefully obvious how little I have remembered.
Back at the beginning of my life here I worked for a music promoter; when the bands from the States and the UK flew in, generally with a lot of very anti-Israel ideas, I was their whipping boy and one girl PR show for the positive Israel experience. I was the worst person for the PR role as I have my own love hate relationship with the country. Part of my role, when I wasn’t providing spoilt ‘rock stars’ with their every desire (my lips are sealed) was going on a lot of tours in mini buses with stoned/hungover/bored musicians. As you know from previous posts, Israel is an incredible place of natural beauty so it’s not difficult to impress but when we got to the religious sites I let my explorers down, luckily those who were awake/sober enough to listen were way more clued up than I.
Let’s just take for a moment the Christian sites, supposedly something I should have a vague clue about: I would take my Lonely Planet (not terribly informative religion wise) with me on all trips and surreptitiously read it on the bus. I deflected questions until we had our proper guide with us. Once I famously took a visitor to the many churches on the shores of The Sea of Galilee on Easter Sunday and couldn’t understand why they were all shut. Ignorance is too high a compliment. Maybe my goldfish sized memory is partly to blame. After so many tours and trips, having taken every visiting family member, friend, work colleague over an eight year period I should have ingested some of the knowledge. It’s in there somewhere.
So I have a weekend to get revising and try to link the places I know with the stories that I knew at 8. Site seeing is way more enjoyable if you actually have an idea what site you are looking at. If I don’t manage it I apologise in advance Ma and Pa, perhaps you should get googling.