I just got back from a twelve-day tour of Israel. Before you go to Israel, and you talk to people about the trip, those who have gone usually say things like, “Oh my god, best trip of my life.” “Moving beyond words, you will come back changed.” But no one tells you the nitty gritty behind taking a guided group bus tour. They keep that from you. They keep a lot from you. But I found out everything. The hard way.
- No waiter in Israel has ever uttered, “I’m sorry, we ran out of hummus.”
- At 41 years old, I can still get yelled at for saving seats on the bus.
- Prior to visiting the Western Wall, one needs to have a conversation with their daughter as to why crop tops aren’t appropriate for that occasion.
- The hotel wake-up calls you will receive are the most frightening phone call of all time.
- Your tour guide yells at you if your lunch lasts longer than 20 minutes. But I stayed true to my belief that shish kebob and food court should never go together.
- As young Israeli soldiers gave speeches about the dangers of guarding the borders, all I thought was, “Damn, Israeli soldiers are hot.”
- You can really fall asleep anywhere sitting up. Thinking about selling neck pillows at every tourist stop.
- Israeli ice coffee is delicious. It wasn’t until day 10 and tighter shorts that I found out they put ice cream in it. It’s as if the whole country is made up of Jewish Grandmas who want to fatten you up.
- Apparently, I can eat beets and a cucumber salad at 6:30 in the morning.
- I had to make a hard choice between Mojitos at my hotel pool or a walking tour of Jerusalem’s Old City. Do you know they use real lime?
- Apparently, you can learn too much. I was fine thinking the Ottoman Empire was a furniture store.
- If you are ever late to the bus, the rest of the group looks at you like you just made a camel fart.
- After touring for five straight 14-hour days, the kids start whispering to each other and you worry about a Lord of the Flies scenario.
- European male visitors wear extremely small bathing suits that show they are quite alive in the Dead Sea.
- The time change gets to you, it’s 2:00am right now.
Have I given you the impression I might not be a great tourist? Check out Vacation Peer Pressure.