The Wajews were lucky enough to experience a rare Israel occurrence during our night in the Bedouin tents: Rain in the middle of the desert! This kind of rain probably comes about once a year; our timing was a bit unfortunate. This morning, we packed up early to head off to our desert shenanigans. Starting with our hike up Masada, we finally got some warmth and desert sun. Though through the sun and the shaded spots during our time at the top, I personally took my sweatshirt on and off approximately three and a half times. We toured around the ancient city and learned about the city's incredible history and culture.
We saw the remains of the kingdom and descended into the cave-like space that was the water hole. Otto and Polina were formally given Hebrew names that they had chosen, and their names echoed through the valley. Well, kind of - the wind was a bit too strong, it's been a weird day in regards to weather. After countless beautiful pictures that were all successfully photobombed by the Dead Sea and mountains of Jordan, we descended down the opposite side of the mountain which is longer yet less steep than the Roman path that we took to climb up. There's also a cable car that can transport people up and down the mountain, but hiking the heights is what separates the boys from the men - The Wajews did Masada right!
From the highest highs to the lowest low, after a quick lunch - where I finally got my first falafal (yum!) - we drove over to the Dead Sea, which is actually the lowest point in the world. After covering ourselves head to toe with mud, it was finally time to float! I was warned by many even before this trip of how potentially painful the Dead Sea experience can be. Because of all of this, I didn't quite understand why one would want to put themselves through such misery, but I get it now. It's kind of like the opposite of gravity because all your body wants to do is float up towards the surface - it was pretty awesome! Not to mention our skin was abnormally soft once the mud washed off. However, the warning that I will pass on is to not put too much mud on your face. It will burn once it starts to dry, and you will try to wipe it off with your salty hands which will make it burn more. I'm just saying, you've been warned.
We are now on the bus on the way to Jeruselam where I am pretty much the only one awake - The Bedouin tents were great, but you can only sleep so well in a big tent with 40+ people in the middle of the desert. We're all super excited to experience the culture and true Judaism that goes on in this great city, plus all the fun sites and activities left on our itenerary!