Blog Update #2...I am ridiculous...

Wow, I am so sorry on the lack of blog updates, dear readers! I am still trying to make myself be motivated in times of stress, and when I am motivated, I am so focused I think of nothing else! Also, I didn't realize how difficult it is to keep our house clean before. We had enough people doing little things here and there this whole time and never noticed how much that really helped. In the end, it feels like I never stop cleaning. Work on my cemetery is progressing rather well, I hope. I had a panic attack Wednesday night over it thinking I was really behind, but when I talked to the others about it, everyone seemed to think I was the only one in control with things going smoothly. Sweet! Anyway, here's the update I promised last week...


I visited the Palestinian economic center of Ramallah, located in the West Bank – a quick and easy 30 minute bus ride from Jerusalem!

Nutter trapped himself on the roof next door! An account of our attempts to save him!

May and June are ideal wedding months and the International Conservation Center building is the ideal location for wedding photos!

The fishing culture in Akko is not only related to boats, but also net and harpoon fishing!

I spent the weekend with one my advisors, Kamil, and his amazing family in Haifa. He took me to Nazareth since I’ve never been there! It was a great time, I ate a ton of Arabic food and drank more Arabic coffee than I ever have in a single weekend. I’m surprised I didn’t absorb Arabic into my language list I heard so much of it this weekend! The pictures in Nazareth are of the Basilica of the Annunciation. For the sake of time for myself, you can check out the wiki page for the basilica for more info.

"Synagogue Church", so named because it's believed to be the synagogue Jesus first started his teaching ministry.

Now I’m just focusing on getting my project done. I’m working in the Greek Christian cemetery outside the old city. It’s used by all the churches in Akko: St. George, Greek Orthodox; St. Andrew, Greek Catholic; St. John’s, Roman Catholic; and the Maronite Church. The oldest graves are in complete ruin and the community really wants to fix it up. Pretty much, what I am doing is creating a documentation, conservation, and maintenance plan for these communities. My project will be in two phases: Phase I – compiling historic records to identify the main importance of the cemetery to the communities and the city of Akko; Phase II – surveying the present conditions and past maintenance, creating grave typologies, identifying urgent care, and creating a plan that includes short and long term maintenance goals, including budgeting and volunteer care. I’m pretty excited. Here are some photos of the cemetery now:

I’m also starting the job search, networking. I need to find a job! I’ve also decided that I will definitely return to the States at the end of July/beginning of August! Whether or not I remain in the States is questionable and dependent upon the job search. I’m looking for historic preservation work, private or government, in the following parts of the States: Philadelphia, Washington, DC, San Francisco; or I’m also looking in Israel. We’ll see what happens!


Getting Crazy...

Wow, I must apologize, my dear readers. This past month has been pretty crazy. Between finishing our mini projects to saying good byes to half our crew to beginning our personal projects, I have had very little time to update. Well, that’s not quite true. I’ve gone through spells of being extremely lazy and extremely productive, which I haven’t much liked. I would prefer steady spurts of productivity to lead into rewards of relaxation. Instead I’ve been doing the opposite – being extremely lazy and then freaking out and going crazy trying to be productive. I need to work on a schedule…

Anyway, let me give you the highlights of the month of May. This is going to be in two parts…

I saw a camel in the mote around the old city of Akko!

Nutter fell asleep on the chair!

We had a tour of the agricultural lands surrounding Akko and were given more Arabic coffee, cucumbers, and tomatoes than we knew what to do with!

We said our farewells to those who were leaving early with a lovely BBQ!

I woke up to bagpipes and ended up watching a parade for the Feast of St. George!

The last rains of winter/spring.

We visited Ella at her gorgeous home in the Western Galilee, a small village called Mitzpe Abirim inside a nature reserve!

We got a special tour of the Bahai Gardens in Haifa!

Sorry for the lack of explanation on a great number of things. My mind is a little bit everywhere, so I can't quite focus on descriptions. HOWEVER, if you want some good explanations of things, you could always check out my facebook photos, because I always make sure there are explanations and descriptions there. And that's easier and faster than updating the blog, sadly. And as I've said before...I've been feeling lazy. This shall improve, my friends! But the second half of the blog posting will be tomorrow. For now, I have work to do!