Fancy a Jaffa?

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June 21st 2017
Published: June 21st 2017
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Dear Blog Readers,

Today's breakfast contribution came from 'salad dressing woman' sat next to us. Once coiffed, we packed our bags for a day in Tel Aviv. First stop was filling the hire car with petrol (more expensive than back home at £1.30/litre). Amazingly, we had a sprinkling of rain on the way into the city centre! Once the car was dropped off, having tried to get another $15 out of me unsuccessfully, we got the tram to the bus station. Our attempt to get a hat-trick of modes of transport was successful as we were soon on a full bus to Tel Aviv.

The traffic was pretty bad but it took just over an hour and the bus was fairly comfortable but minimal leg room for my lanky legs. We hopped on a local bus to head towards Jaffa, the oldest part of Tel Aviv. The clock tower in the centre was impressive and surrounding it were numerous market stalls. This included a flea market which had the biggest quantity of rubbish I've seen - anybody fancy a 1998 HP Outsourcing for Professionals handbook? Of course, Laura was in her element so I left her to it (dangerous) as I went for a wander in hunt for a hair cut and a good shave. Didn't take long and I was spruced up and ready for the enslaught of bank balance damaging news.

We found a nice place for a late lunch before walking to the old city and down to the port for an ice cream - which they do brilliantly here! A lovely wander along the coast and we finally pitched up at the beautiful Alma beach. There were plenty of surfers but no swimming was allowed. Laura didn't realize and went straight in - she got stung so we think the jelly fish must have been prominent. This didn't stop her exclaiming how good the water was so I went for a little dip (absolute rebel).

We don't know where the time goes but we were getting the bus back to the central station as the Sun was setting. Once there, we bought a ticket from the machine and went through the barriers only to realise we had just bought a train ticket rather than a bus! At least it meant we could add an extra tally to our daily modes of transport which had haemorrhaged our step count to just 21,000 for the day.

The train was much more comfortable than the bus but took even longer than the one this morning! Once arrived in Jerusalem, we realised we were actually miles from the city centre. A bit of head scratching and a fortunate conversation with a guy from San Francisco meant we soon found which bus we needed and after half an hour we found ourselves outside the car rental place we were at this morning!

Our walk back to the hotel was interuppted by lots of police barriers and their presence in numbers. A combination of Ramadan and a recent stabbing outside Demascus Gate seem to have contributed to heightened tensions particularly in the evenings. We grabbed a skewer kebab from a street stall on the way back and finally managed to get some stamps for the postcards. A final big day ahead of us tomorrow - wish we had another week!!

Tink and Laura x


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