Amber in Israel

January 23, 2007 at 3:17 am (Uncategorized)

Amber sent me this from Israel where she is visiting our friend Nate (who I went to Egypt with in the fall). It’s easy to forget from all of her adventures that Amber is in her 2nd year of Medical school in Dublin at the Royal College of Surgeons. Nate is also in Med School, in Be’er Sheva, Israel. After Israel, Amber heads to Austria for a ski trip with her dad. Rough life, we know.

Amber writes, “I am here and safe and having a great time. I got in yesterday morning and Nate took me straight to his lab to cut open some mice and harvest their beta-cells (pancreas)- I know that sounds gross but it was actually really cool. And then we rented a car and picked up a few of Nate’s friends and drove out to the Dead Sea- it took less than an hour to get there, this country is so small. It is beautiful, pure desert, just rocks and salt and water- and the entire area is under sea level, even the peaks of the mountains around it. We ended up camping out under the stars and got up the next morning to take a swim in the salty waters- it was a little cold but really fun- the perfect sea swim for squeamish people because there are absolutely no animals in it. Salt crystals form rocks on the bottom though and it cuts you up to get in and out, which really sucks because the salt water stings! It tastes pretty bad too. But bouncing in the water is worth it. I don’t think you could submerge yourself if you really wanted to. And the color of the sea is a perfect blue-green, like one I have never seen before.

After that we drove up to Masata, the “last stronghold” of the Jews before they were crushed by the Romans about 2000 years ago. It took a little while (it’s really high) but we hiked up into the old city and walked around, it was built by King Herod himself and it was all very impressive. And it overlooks the entire Dead Sea valley which is beautiful. I am hanging around in Be’er Sheva tomorrow and then going to Jerusalem the next day.”

I’ll post photos when she sends them.

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