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Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Bethlehem Hotel InterContinental

I went back and the crowd was thin enough for a friend to take these:

Today I had a lovely day swimming with friends at the gorgeous Hotel InterContinental in Bethlehem.

I decided not to take (close) pictures of the pool area because there were so many families with so many different manifestations of modesty. There were women wading in the pool up to their knees in trousers and long sleeves and veils with their babies, teen girls in leggings and t-shirts, women and girls in swimsuits with and without shorts over them, with and without t-shirts over them. Little kids in swimsuits and water-wings. Men and boys in swim shorts, mostly without shirts. At least one European tourist in a Speedo.

The hotel is lovely and the grounds are amazing.

And then there was the ride home. One of the Israeli soldiers at the checkpoint decided to make me and another woman get out of our friend's car and walk. They sent the driver through the checkpoint without us. Then they delayed opening the gates for a while. And when we got to the last security booth, the soldier was taking a private call and ignored us. After a while he yelled at us to get out. It was annoying and disappointing, but nothing compared to what our Palestinian friends have to go through every day.

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