Saturday, May 19, 2012

Beit Lehi

 This is our bus traveling through a field to get to an archaeological dig. Not many get to go here. It is Beit Lehi. As I have said in Israel you can put a shovel anywhere and find an ancient city. They recently discovered this old city. It is buried under the fields. We walked to the site on a dusty road and saw and learned some amazing things. They told us that it was thought an ancient man named Lehi lived here. It is located on an Israeli military site. Lotsof bullets laying around on the ground. Here is a link to read more about it.   Beit Lehi
 It is spring and the wild flowers are abundant and beautiful. They kept reminding us that in a couple of weeks it would return to desert. 
 What appears as normal terrain suddenly opens up into cave openings. These have been discovered in the last couple of years. We got to go into them. 

 This cave is a place they call a dove columbary. They raised doves by the thousands for multiple reasons. They used them for sacrifice. They gathered the bird pooh for fertilizer. Each triangle held a pair of birds. Doves still live in here. It is all hand carved into the rock. I am currently reading a book called The Dove Keepers that is so much fun to read having been in this dove keepers place. It is a story that takes place in Israel and at the Masada which I can also relate to now. 

 This opening has a small chapel with an alter in it. We did not go into it. 
 This is the site of a temple. They are still uncovering and restoring it. The beautiful mosaic floor is just out in the open and they are reconstructing it. The patterns are beautiful. 

 Chunks of mosaic are lying all over the ground waiting to be put back into place.

 The next cave we went into is an olive press. They grew olive trees here and pressed the olives and sold it. The wheel I am sitting on is from a huge press that was turned by a donkey. 

 This is a baptismal font. It was used to cleanse those that worked in the olive press. There is a neat water system in it. This was an amazing part of our trip. Very few people get to go to the Beit Lehi site. Funforless travel has a connection there so we got to go to it. 

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