Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas in Bethlehem

We were in Bethlehem for Christmas Eve. As we made our way down to Manger Square the streets were crowded with a procession of scouts leading the way for the Latin Patriarch. See the bagpipe players here:
video

Here is a view of Manger Square, full of people celebrating Christmas.
video

frisbee golf on the mount of olives

ready, set
jump!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

walking around the old city

View of the Old City of Jerusalem, looking East towards the Mount of Olives and mountains of Jordan, from the top of the Lutheran Church's tower.
On their last day in town I met up with Kelsey and Njuhi, my classmates from Notre Dame who have been doing their internships in Jerusalem for the past 6 months.
Mint tea. Perfect way to end a day in the old city.

kimbap. :)

Chin-Won indulged my craving for sushi and helped us make some 25 rolls of kimbap (Korean version of sushi). was DELICIOUS.

One of the main differences with kimbap is that the veggies are cooked (even the cucumbers were sauted), the rice is made with sesame oil, and you put a whole lot more in each roll.

Friday, December 17, 2010

its beginning to feel a lot like Christmas

My first Saturday back in Jerusalem we had some friends over and baked all day long. Happy to be back to using an oven!

We started the day off right, with ableskiver--- a pancake/waffle batter made into balls of goodness :)

gingerbread cookies in the making

rolling out saffron dough to make delicious rolls
Brit drizzling chocolate on the macaroons
Our finished products. We also made those paper stars and hearts :)

Friday, December 10, 2010

goodbye gulu

So, its been a whirlwind couple of weeks. Some highlights:

-Ray has been approved to be a pastor in the ELCA, meaning that once he graduates next May from seminary he can be called to be ordained as a pastor. He had his final interview via skype, and was unanimously approved.

-I am feeling much better. All signs of malaria and e.coli are gone, and I'm just working on regaining my strength and weight.

-A strange disease, yet to be identified by name, started to spread in the Northern region of Uganda. The disease originated in an area outside of the district we were living in, but a couple of cases had arrived at a hospital in town. Our university decided to relocate us to Kampala (the capital city, 6 hour bus ride from Gulu) and officially end our program, moving up our departure date from Gulu by 10 days. We said rushed goodbyes and packed up our lives in Gulu over the weekend and drove down to Kampala Monday.

-I decided to fly home early, so here I am in Jerusalem. I am happy to indulge the comforts of being home-  yesterday I had a delicious steak (helps with my post-malaria anemia!) and fresh veggies. On the menu for tonight is sushi! I am working on my final paper for the semester, due Tuesday and then will be able to really relax.

-Ray is presently in Egypt-- he had a 5 day layover in Cairo on route to Jerusalem. He is staying with a WCC friend and is seeing the sites! He has now seen the source of the Nile in Uganda and the end of the Nile in Egypt, all within a matter of weeks.

We will be in Jerusalem through the new year and then back to the states in January to begin classes. We'll keep posting from Jeru :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

chimp tracking

Can you see the chimp? I promise there is a chimp in this photo. We went chimp tracking, a four hour walk through a rain forest area in the park (see, I am feeling better). Our guide did a tremendous job finding these chimps.
 Thanks to the telephoto lens we can see the chimp that was way high in the branches.
This female chimp hung out for a while closer to the ground before swinging her way to the tops of the trees and joining her male compatriot.
 

murchison

The doctor said I needed a change of scenery. What better place to go than Murchison Falls national park for a weekend getaway with friends?
We went on a safari through the park. With our heads popping out the sun roof we were on the lookout for elephants, lions, leopards, buffalo, hippos, giraffe, deer, antelope, jackal, warthogs, gazelle, waterbuck, and birds...
Looks like 2 lions right? At least that's what I was hoping...
 
Nope, just those warthogs. Despite our efforts to spot lions in the grass and leopards in the trees, we didn't see any cats.
These gals were all over the place. In the background across the lake is the Democratic Republic of Congo. I have so many more photos of animals that will be put in a slideshow for viewing once we are back home and with you in person.
We went on a boat ride up the Nile towards the waterfall. Along the way the boat stuck close to the coast and so we saw so many animals, mostly hippos, crocodiles, elephants, warthogs, deer/antelope things... You see the elephant in this one?
Apparently keeping cool by keeping its mouth open wide.
Warthogs having a brawl along the water.
I love the way the clouds and shadows practically make this a natural back&white and color photo at once.

Waterfall way in the back. We went to the top of the falls the next day.
This is where the river Nile is the most narrow, making for a very powerful waterfall.
Here we are with our friends Marissa and Ben who traveled all the way from Philadelphia to visit us in Gulu!
Some years ago there was a flood and the second waterfall on the left was created. Imagine how powerful the waterfall must have been before.
sunset from the top of the falls. end to a beautiful couple of days :)