Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Jerusalem if I forget you....
I am in the airport right now. It has been a hard past few days and I will never forget the time I spent here. I can't believe it is over but I know I have changed and this has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. Shalom from Israel

Monday, December 7, 2009


On the Shores of Galilee

Love these girls
My fish dinner... Yes I ate the whole thing. I even pulled the skin off
Jordan river where we saw a bunch of people baptizing themselves

Sunset at the Kibutz on the sea of Galilee
Just after our boat ride across the sea of Galilee
Mount of Beatitude
At Banyas falls
View from the high tower at the castle
Up on Nimrods Castle. It was ridiculously cold and windy but still amazing!
We were so surprised when we got to Galilee and it was beautiful and green. 
It felt like we were in a different country.
This was outside of the center as the sun was setting on the city 

I have been awful about posting my life in Jerusalem so I am going to try and make up for that in a few quick picture posts. I was able to spend 2 weeks in Galilee going to all of the sites from Christ's ministry. I loved being there and had some of the most amazing experiences of my whole trip here. I have a new love an appreciation for this part of Israel. 

Friday, December 4, 2009

Christmas shopping has started in Jerusalem. I only have 2 weeks left and I am feeling the pressure to get so many things done. There are still things that I want to do and see and I am constantly on the hunt for things I have been wanting. I was able to make friends with a goldsmith in the Old city and with his resources and my ideas we have been able to do some costume pieces while I have been here. It's been so much fun. I am getting really sad thinking about leaving and I can't believe how fast it has come. I am so grateful for the chance that I had to be here. I will try to be better with my updates these last few weeks. Shabbat Shalom!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Picture Story of My Last Few Weeks

Life in the Holy Land

I have been to a lot of ruins and castles over the past few weeks but this was one of my favorite. We got to be there as the sun was setting and it was so beautiful.

Yes I was a Falafal for Halloween. Explanation: this is a popular middle eastern food. It typically includes 3 falafal balls in a pita with veggies and humus. Google it for a picture of the real thing and this costume will become that much better

Just chilling in the Jordan River... no big deal

We visited a Mosque in Jordan and had to be fully decked out in black robes. I felt a little like I was in Harry Potter

Pools of Bethesda

Petra rocked my world! It was one of the favorite places I have been to thus far. It was amazing

Sukkot at the Western Wall watching the Jewish people wack their willows

I love the Old City. It is so different then what I expected . The limestone streets are my favorite.
Egypt was a blast as you can tell. We spent about 9 days there.

Jane and I on the Villa Delerosa. We had to do a certain amount of sites by the end of our class so some days we would just go around all day seeing churches and places on the list

Dome of the Rock for the first time. We can only go during certain times and it's hard to coordinate with class and our trips, so I haven't been able to go as much as I would like.

I have been so busy I haven't had a spare moment to do anything. I decided my mind needed a break for a few minutes so I decided it was about time I did a blog of what I have been up to. I don't have that much time so this will be mostly photos.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

I Love Lauren Forever

I miss Lauren tons. So, I thought i should do something for her. Lucky for me, I have one of the most creative fianc├ęs in the world. So I took her idea and put my own little spin on it. I love you Lauren. I can't wait to be sealed to you. You are my absolute favorite. I hope you like this. I am so excited for the big day. As you can see, I think about it a lot

I think about it when I sleep.

I think about it jumping in front of her place last year.

Still jumping for joy.

I think about it on creepy BYU pathways after hours.

I think about it at the ESC where we first unofficially met.

I think about it while I ride Cougars.

I think about it while whispering in a Cougar's ear.

How can I not think about it when I'm around ducks?

I think about it in front of Provo Temple.

I think about it in front of my place last year.

I think about it while discussing principles of faith with Joseph Smith.

I think about it when I go to Del.

I think about it in front of the Timpanogos Temple.

I think about it when i drive.

To be honest, I think about it all the time. I am thrilled that Lauren has decided to be my wife. She makes me a better person every day. I look up to her and respect her. She makes me incredibly happy. I look forward to the day we kneel in the temple and make the eternal covenant of marriage with one another on June 12, 2010. I love you Lauren.

-Michael Reid

Monday, October 12, 2009

I Love Mike

I've Got a Love That Will Last

It is mine and Mike's anniversary today and I am thousands of miles away. So over the past few weeks I have been taking some pictures of places I have been. I miss you Mike and wish you could be here with me. I am so lucky to have someone who let me go away for 3 and a half months to chase after a dream I have always had. He has been so supportive and understanding of me leaving. I am grateful to have him in my life and since I couldn't really do anything for him this was the best I could do. Some of the pictures are hard to read but it's the thought right? I love you mike and can't wait to see you.
Li' heet' ra'ote

I love Mike at the Luxor Temple
I love Mike at a Monastery 
I love Mike at a Mosque 
I love Mike in Cairo 
I love Mike on the Nile
I love Mike on Sinai 

Friday, October 9, 2009

Egypt was a blast, except for the few who suffered from the results of produce or water consumption. Some are still suffering the consequences of those choices. These were the highlights of our trip. There were a lot of long bus rides and hot hot days. It was more than worth it. I got to see some of the most amazing sites in history and experience a culture that is so different then anything I have ever seen. Pictures are coming as soon as I can go up to Hebrew University to load pictures up. 

The first real day we woke up early and made our way to get in line for the Giza Pyramids and the Sphinx. it was amazing! I could not believe I was standing right next to the actual pyramids. As we went into the entrance we went through a small tunnel and then saw a small ladder like walk way up a narrow tunnel going up. There is 0 ventilation so you feel like you can't breath and it smells awful but still amazing! We went all the way to the top chamber where the coffin is kept. It was just a big open room with the empty coffin towards the back. I did climb inside just so I could say I did it. Then for the next 20 minutes it was an intense music session. Everyone was doing chants and  Prince of Egypt type music with weird calls and and high pitch tribal calls. it was honestly so cool. We could hardly breath yet we all stayed up there sweating our brains out to sing songs. After that we went over to a look out of the 3 pyramids and then to the sphinx. That night we took a 1 hour flight to Luxor and began our next city. 
We started the next day with a ride over to the Valley of the Kings. We got to go inside King Tuts tomb and several of the Ramses tombs. It was amazing. Some of the original pigment is on the walls. Once again these places are like steam rooms. You sweat from just going inside them. It was so cool to try and picture what it would have looked like back in the day in its full glory. Then we headed over to queen Hatshepsut's Temple and got a very long history lesson there. We also got to stop by the pit where Joseph Smith's mummies came from, which was really cool to see. That night we went back to the hotel and headed down to the Nile where we climbed into a Felucca( similar to a large sail boat) and took a ride down to the field where we were starting our camel rides. My camels name was michael Jackson. I don't think he liked me very ,much because he tried to role on top of me as i was getting off. Seriously though that would have been really funny if I had gotten crushed my a camel in Egypt, just for story purposes. That night we went back and tried ot go into the city to go shopping but it was super lame and our driver lied to us and took us to the wrong place and charged us more for our carriage. Not to mention he did drugs. Don't worry my friend Taylor told him all about how drugs are bad so I'm sure it will stick.
The Next day we headed out early in the morning on a motor boat ride to the Karmak temple. it was AMAZING! I loved it. We got to go into the old temple and see all the pictures of washing and anointings from Egyptian times. I found it all so interesting. I wish iI could go into all te history and facts that I have been learning while here but then my blog would be a mile long so I will spare everyone. We then took a carriage ride to Luxor temple which was equally as cool and amazing. You just stand and stare at it all and wonder how they did it. It really was beautiful. We then got to go over to an outdoor market where I hit it big time with purchases. I walked away with some sweet deals and awesome stuff. Then came the Over Night Train from Luxor to Cairo. I was expecting it to be as bad as my over night train ride last summer from Paris to Italy. It was a million times better. In this case I actually had a bed! I loved it and thought it was fun. Still not a whole lot of sleep but that's okay
The next day we hit the  Egyptian Museum and got to see all the treasure of King Tut. It was so cool! Everything was so detailed and ornate. I even got to see a mumified crocodile and real mummies. Then we had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe and headed over to the  Khan Al- Khalili Bazaar for more shopping and free time. 
The next day we woke up and headed over to the Citadel - Muhammad Ali Mosque, and got a tour there and a lesson on the Muslim faith by the one and only Islam.( we are now friends on Facebook). Then we started our long drive to  St Catherine's Monastery, and got to stop and see the red sea coast and a real oasis. 
The next day was a very very long day we woke up at 2:00 am and drove to the base of our hike we started the  hike at 3:00 to Mt. Sinai. By the end of the walk up there i wanted to kill anyone else who asked me if i wanted a camel. Honestly every 50 feet we hear, " you want camel? camel? camel?" Some people finally stated saying no one here wants a camel. We didn't have that much sleep. It was a long hike and a lot of steps but I can honestly say I have never seen a more beautiful sunrise in my life. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity. We sang a lot of songs while we were up there and on our way down we were able to have a testimony meeting. I felt blessed to have the chance to do that. It is something I will always remember. After that it was one long ride home to the center.
Egypt was incredible and I am so happy I was able to go and see and experience everything!


Life thus far.......

I am actually a horrible blogger. I am doing some of the coolest things I have ever done and I don't even get on to write about all of them. This is going to be a series of catch up posts so that everyone can be up to date with what is going on. I promise to try harder and get more up about all the amazing things I am getting to see and experience 

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Thursday night at about 11:00 we made it home from our 8 day trip to Egypt. It was an amazing trip and each day was so packed with places and driving and walking. I feel so burned out. We started out our trip on Thursday morning at 6:00 am to start our long drive to the Egyptian border. We made a few stops on the way and saw some really amazing places. We went to a fortress built up on a hill with homes carved into the sides of the limestone mountains. We went to the tel where they believe Abraham lived for a time. We went to a look out which is probably the place that Lehi's family came down as they traveled out of Jerusalem. It looked like the grand canyon. It was breath taking. We stopped at a crater and watched a very outdated movie about the earth. I think at that point all 82 of us were asleep. Then we made our way to a Kibbutz. We got a tour of their date plantation and ate some summer ice cream. I had no idea ahead of time what a Kibbutz was or how it worked. I was amazed to see it all. In a way they are living a life similar to the law of consecration. We spent the night there in their hotel. So it took us all day with our many stops to get about 4 hours outside of Jerusalem. It was a very long day.

We started the next day out early and headed off for the border and our long process through customs. Since everyone in our group is too nice Egyptians just kept cutting us in line and we wouldn't say anything. So it ended up taking us a very long time to get through. Once we made it over that line we said good bye to vegetables, fruit and tap water. We had no idea our carb intake would go so high over the next few days. Once we made it over to the other side we picked up a new bus and our tour guide Islam. Islam made for much entertainment on our trip and was a wonderful addition to our bus. We then headed out for our 8 hour ride . We had to come up with lots of different things to keep us all occupied since sleeping was so uncomfortable. We found out a few things. One- about 50 percent of the boys on our bus knew how to french braid hair and were actually decent at it. Two- it is really hard to try and balance on a tour bus when you are competing with everyone for who can stay up the longest. Three- most people don't know the words to popular songs , so singing as a group turns into a solo for those of us who really do know the words. Overall the bus was very entertaining and I found out a lot more than I ever expected about the people on my bus. We pulled into the city late in the afternoon to see the pyramids blending in with the skyline of the city. At that point we were all freaking out that we were actually looking at the pyramids in real life. It honestly was so cool. We unloaded our stuff at the hotel and then headed out for a light show at the pyramids. A little bit of background: When they told us light show we were all expecting some sweet lasers and music. We were very mistaken. I felt like i was in an old documentary movie with old fashioned lights and pack man style graphics. Our favorite phrase of the evening was " The world fears time... but time fears... THE PYRAMIDS" you can imagine the chills after that statement. So even though the light sow was a little bit of a disappointment it was still really cool to be right there experiencing it. 

I still really need to recover sleep wise but i will finish my Egypt experience tomorrow!
          Love you all

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pictures From The Holy Land