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No longer so quaint

Archaeological dig nearby


BETHLEHEM...... Located in the West Bank, friends thought my friend and I were crazy for driving there. Well, Bethlehem was one of the hot spots of the intifada -- which had just started shortly before my visit. Palestinian youths had been pelting Jewish cars with rocks.

On our way out, we were stopped by an Israeli soldier wanting a lift to his base near Herodian's ruins. We buckled up and were on our way. He suggested we not use our seat belts. It was easier to get out of the van quickly without them in case we were fire bombed on the way. Off they came!

On to Manger Square. (Yep, it was really called that!) ... I pictured Bethlehem as the quaint little village that you always see in Christmas cards. Well, some things change over 2000 years. ... Bethlehem had a couple churches built around the manger location. The "actual spot" was a hole with a star around it. Forrest said it was strange to be in there without a mob, candles, and prayer. There were only four of us in the chamber.


Copyright 2001 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.