11.01.2008

olive picking


These are actually Sarah's pictures. I am getting a little tired of picture taking, so luckily we can all share pictures with our thumb drives. This is Sarah Jane and I in front of the center pretending to be doing something important, but really we just wanted a picture with the olives. But in my defense, I picked every one of the olives in the bag coming up.


This is on the street to the center and we discovered this darling little bench... when everyone else was picking olives... oops. It was hard because most of the trees are so big that you have to use a ladder or be really tall- both of which I did not have access to, so we took a little rest on the bench. You may notice that both Justin and Steven are leaning towards my side even though there is plenty of room on this bench, yeah... I so love it here!


This is my happy olive face. I picked all these olives all by myself. People kept saying, "Oh Becca let me take that bag for you and I will go dump them in the big bucket." I opted out because I liked the pride of carrying every single one and especially depositing it myself.


I didn't pick all of these, but aren't they beautiful?! My friend Melissa took this picture I think. There is a lot of picture trading going down, which I am so ok with.

Anyway now for a real update. I have been here about a month and a half now and I have only gotten homesick a few times and I really think I am receiving lots of help from heaven in that department. The only times I get a little teary is when I see my adoorrable niece, so that is ok because if I were home I wouldn't get to see her anyway. Although it may seem like I only have fun all the day- I am taking 15 credits. We are almost done with my Old Testament class which has been really great. My teacher is pretty tough, but we are memorizing names and meanings and places and valleys and Phillistine fortresses and it is great. It is so great to go to these sites and know the geography of everywhere surrounding and the stories that happened there.Also, we have an ancient near east studies class taught by a BYU professor- so we have been going in order of Old Testament chronology so that we can put the patriarchs in context with their actual surroundings at the time. For example, we discussed why it was so important for Abraham to be taught in Ur because he came right after the Sumerian renaissance when they would have learned writing in their temples and about how important it is to have priesthood- even though there's was corrupt. We all love love love the ancient near east class because we are learning so much new information, but gaining more knowledge about why the Old Testament is true.The other classes are called Modern Near East studies. We take it from 2 different professors, a Palestinian Christian from Bethlehem University and then an Orthodox Jewish man who teachers at a Conservative Jewish school. This class is really interesting because so far we have learned a detailed history of Judaism, and now we are starting to discuss the Jewish perspective of the conflict. Our Palestinian teacher has talked more about Palestine and covers Muslim background a little bit, but most of the things we learn about Muslim culture comes from my Arabic teacher.Ayman- my Arabic teacher could quite possibly be my favorite teacher here. He is hillarious and we all look forward to this class so much because we just ask him questions and have a blast. He told us the best restaurants to go to for falfel and kinea so I think we are going to check that out this week. Well, Arabic starts in 10 min so I better say Khatrek!
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