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FC: Digging Israel Summer 2011 | James and Kindra

1: For James, the love of my life and the best travel partner I could ever ask for

2: Here we go!

3: Layover in England Saw Buckingham palace, Diana's garden, Speakers' square (where Pres. Hinckley taught). Kindra likes taking pictures of balconies

4: Couch surfing with Shlomo and Michal | Israeli beaches are awesome | ? | Taking the wrong train back to the airport... | 12 hours in Tel Aviv

5: Welcome to Galilee What a babe

6: First field trip - Bet She'an, a former Decapolis city build into a tel. We checked out the theater, bath, shops, and ruins from the earthquake in 363 AD

7: A mosaic that was once stolen, and generations of bath house floors | View from the tel. Lots of stairs. | Matt and James at an ancient public restroom. Definitely the highlight of the trip

8: Other mural-packed sites we didn't get photos of: Bet Alpha, Zippori, Ein Gedi

9: 5:00 AM, Huqoq

10: The Pile

11: Setting up camp

12: Breakfast

13: Kindra's square #1

14: James's square | Brian the Red

15: Other members of the dig | Miki with the camp guards, semi-regular Israeli military drills, one of many disturbing warning signs, Bruiser the communal pet, lotsa bugs

16: The Cistern | Very messy, very claustrophobic, lots of slugs. Found several tunnels leading to other cisterns that may have been used for escape or hiding

17: The Mikvah | Jim accidentally found this cadillac of mikvahs. Byron's team excavated the steps. The walls are lined with plaster and pottery shards

18: The Kibbutz (Huqoq Balev) lunar eclipse that looked like a cocoa puff, attention deficit cat, us crashing a festival of weeks celebration, the porch, the communal laundry basket

19: The Team | Back row: James Ballard, Pat Craig, Brad Erikson, Jim Bucko, Adam Stovall, Xuan Mai Vo, Shaun McKinnon. 2nd Row: Josh Pedrick, Matt Grey, Byron McCane, John Caroline, Danielle Balderas, Jessica Lauren, Courtney Green, Wendy Sczechowicz, "California Courtney" Callison, Brooke Bradley, James, Chad Spigel, Daniel Schindler, Jocelyn Burney, Seth Pfannenschmidt. 3rd Row: Brian Mccracken, Reanne Hinton, Andy Sei, Kelsey Blake, Lily Paige, Kindra, Brian Coussins, Daphne Ippolito Front Row: Miki Golan, AJ Meyer, Mary, Jodi Magness, Jim Haberman, Shua Kisilevitz

20: "Jesus'" synagogue, digitally reconstructed, in the Golan Heights. And a cool tunnel.

21: Gamla One of the last hold outs in the second Jewish revolt. The name means camel, referring to the shape of the mountain.

22: Oldest synagogue?

23: "the cliff" from Josephus's mass suicide account | Josh, who is Micah

24: Byzantine church near Gamla

25: Omrit - Ancient Roman temple, place of gnats, cool painted walls, ancient pipes, column bases

26: The "kibbutzy" kibbutz in the southern desert. They make their own soil.

27: Camels! | The Dead Sea

28: Masada The infamous fortress held by Jews during the Second Revolt | Awesome echo | Jodi, dispelling myths as usual

29: Clockwise: Herod's store rooms, wall paintings in northern palace, the "lots" room, one of the military camps, the synagogue, mosaic from south palace, crazy huge cistern

30: Migdal/Magdala Jodi arguing about a mikvah, excavating a 1st century synagogue with temple-ornamented artifacts

31: Traveling temple (Ezekiel), Courtney and Jocelyn, untrue plaque, James and Peter with the keys, other carvings, the synagogue, the "floor repiar, tourist monk, spaceship church over "peter's house"

32: Church of the Loaves and Fishes

33: Hamat Tiberius - | Like many priestly synagogues, features a sacrificial scene, a zodiac with Helios in the center, and temple imagery

34: We found the synagogue! | Lots of charred logs | Shua: "drink more!"

35: Shilshul powa!! | Keeping the tent from blowing away, Kindra with a sledgehammer, Byron's friend John. "Shilshul" means worm... or poop

36: Wadi Hammam

37: The synagogue that tries to disprove Jodi's dating - uses robbed out limestone from previous building, also found an olive press, all in the shadow of Mt. Arbel with the cool man-made caves used as hideouts

39: Bet Shearim Jewish tombs for the wealthy Yes, James did lie down in one when Shua wasn't looking

40: Jerusalem | Real bacon cheeseburgers! Bryan stayed at a beautiful Christian hostel that used to be a mission, and James met with a professor at Hebrew University

41: The bullet-riddled walls of the city. Apparently UNC Charlotte is excavating here

43: The Mount of Olives, City of David, Hezekiah's tunnel, crazy religious combinations. Discovered our new favorite restaurant. Did some serious shopping. Fell in love with the city.

44: Church of the Holy Sepulchre Supposed site of Christ's burial and resurrection. Very colorful | Christian version of the Jewish synagogues' zodiac

45: We wish we knew who all these saints were. The white bearded guy is the high priest James tried to have lunch with

46: Your favorite ancient Christian symbol and mine... the seal of Melchizedek

47: The pool of Bethesda...and an awesome church with the best acoustics ever

48: Finding Gethsemane was kind of a miracle. Our thanks to Fray Bentos

50: The Galilee House Stayed at the missionary apartment in Tiberius for three nights for free! Washer/dryer, bathtub, fridge, grand piano...and the best view ever.

51: Hiked Mount Arbel and explored the caves. (Kindra's head scarf was in the wash so she is wearing a dish towel)

52: James on the mercy seat and hyraxes at Korazim, James replacing Pan at Caesarea Philppi, and the high place at Tel Dan (center photo)

53: Qatsrin: A cool historical recreation site with a synagogue, oil press and home, the monastery at Kursi, where they think the possessed pigs ran into the sea, and Hisspo/Sussita, Bryan's old dig site. | Last shwarma!

54: 12 Hours in Vienna We didn't take pictures of the restaurant booth we slept in at the airport, but from 6-11 pm we managed to see Mozart's house, the palace, Stephensdom and a bunch of other cool stuff.

56: We went to church, had an adventure finding our hotel, and had a blast doing the "Big Red Bus" tour during our two days in London. Street performers, James with dungeon dummy, the "Fortitude bird, cool sphinx, conspicuous windows on the OXO tower

57: Pitcures from our Harry Potter walking tour

58: Seeing Much Ado About Nothing in the Globe Theatre (with Jeffrey the butler from Fresh Prince!) was a dream come true.

59: Already planning the next trip :)

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