Today is the last day of Sukkot which is the last of a succession of several Jewish holidays in Israel.

Sunday of last week I got invited via another non-Jewish friend* to a party in a religious area of Jerusalem close to Meir Sherim.   There must of been 40-50 people in this structure, food was pretty good, my favourite was salmon in some kind of spicey sauce.   The religious Jews there ranged from Kippor wearing Americans on holiday from Texas to Ultra Orthodox with fox fur hats and stripey gowns, there were some Russian people there as they had a torah in their language.    Its touching that many Jews are happy to invite strangers over to their communities for this special holiday, and make sure there is enough food and seats for extra people to come at short notice, including anyone who might be lonely or away from family to join in.

Two days ago, on a Saturday I went to a friend’s house who teaches Hebrew and had another meal there too.

A lot of restaurants provide Sukkot tents outside their establishments for patrons to sit and eat.

* I meant to say, on the first party I went to, my friend who brought me along is an Arab believer in Jesus, perhaps seems unlikely story, but its thrilling to see genuine friendships between Jews and Arabs here.   On the way we got approached outside a different religious area by Orthodox Jews asking if we could help as their electricity and gone off and they needed someone gentile to flip the breaker switch, which they felt uncomfortable doing as it was a religious holiday, so we were happy to help.

All the holidays are now done, and its back to work tomorrow, no more holidays until Hanukah which is at the early part of December this year, as sometimes it runs parallel with Christmas.

Oh, something else very significant, both the early on in the festival of Sukkot and the last day, it rained!   Although we are in October it seems a little bit early for rain season.

In Jerusalem on the last day of Sukkot

Ships on the Galilee coast

I am on the edge of the Kinneret (the Sea of Galilee)  in the city of Tiberias, on the coast of the lake its easy to see how fishing his been part of the economy for years.

Sadly this fish processing plant looks kind of derelict, although when I walked back to the hostel when it was darker, the lights were on.

A lot of the fish I see in Jerusalem supermarkets comes from Norway.   There is however plenty of small restaurants serving fish caught in the lake to Christians who want an authentic biblical meal.

This boat looks like a lot of the vessels for taking Christian pilgrims around the lake, but its up on blocks for service.    I remember my grandad telling me its important to paint the bottom of your boat each year (or at least for a small sailing dingy with a wooden hull)

Wonder what conversations went on during Jesus’s time during the times when boats were being repaired and maintained around here.

This is an odd looking machine, some kind of drill or milling machine I guess.

One of the unique things about the middle east with scarce rain, is most of the year your yard can easily become an outdoor lounge, workshop or kitchen, with appliances and furniture (that aren’t worth stealing)  not in danger of getting wet, only by sand from the dusty atmosphere.

I did spot some people fishing after all, in a more casual non business fashion, an Arab father and son here.

Its kind of funny that these cats sit her awaiting, it seems they are used to getting the fisherman throw them the small ones not worth taking home, but there was some discarded pizza, so I think they get fed quite well!! 🙂