Holy Land - St Patrick's Day

On St. Patrick's Day I always wear green when I can. Several years ago I purchased a green clergy shirt and wore it on my trip to Israel.

My monthly bus pass expired, so I paid cash or used a day pass.  Using the CharmCard, I can ride local buses, subways, and light rail for a set monthly fee.  The monthly pass starts on the first day that I use the system.  It did not make sense to get a monthly pass now since I will be out of the country. 

At Penn Station I met a Syrian Orthodox priest as we were leaving.  I shared with him some of my experience as a community chaplain through the Baltimore Police.  He was under Patriarch Bartholomew.

We took Amtrak to Newark Airport.  That was very easy and uneventful.  When we got to Newark, we had to go through customs.  We all made it, but I was a little worried.  The agent was really respectful and explained everything. 

While waiting for our fight, I noticed a number of Jewish males at a wall and praying.  It was very moving for me.

On the plane, I felt was if we were sardines. I was near the back between a Jewish man and a woman. He did not speak English very well.  This was my second worst flight.  The first was with Air North back in the 1970s.  On this flight I could not even type on my computer because it was so cramped.

The trip was about 5,600 miles and we were flying 33,000 feet up, 1100 knots.  They started feeding us around 15:00 and again around 22:30.

From the screen in front of me I learned several things.  Jericho is the lowest city in the world, 2500 meters below sea level.  Moscow has 12 million people living within its borders.  Nazareth has over 75,000 people.  Tel Avis has a population of 426,000 and is the country's largest city.  Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world.

We were traveling at 19 km or ten miles in one minute.  We flew over England, Ireland, Holland, Germany, Romania, Hungary, and Turkey.  We had the ability to have chats with other seats.  At any moment I knew how much time before we were to arrive, how many miles, and how many kilometers.

I know only two words of Hebrew, but most people seem to appreciate my effort.
 

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