I have arrived in Jerusalem. This morning, I woke up early and am reflecting on what happened on my flight yesterday. The Evansville to Chicago part was the easiest of all. Waiting in the gate area, I met Andrew Harsh arriving home. That was nice. Boarding in Evansville was the easiest. O'Hare airport has become very complicated. From concourse to concourse you need to take a bus shuttle now and as you, know everyone is always in a hurry. There was a very gracious woman trying to calm everyone down. She had a very difficult job. Our flight from Chicago to New York was delayed. Basically because the one checking the boarding passes couldn't see. I presume the scanner was broken at this gate. Finally, someone had to come off the plane and read the numbers to him so he could enter them. So people were very edgy. And on board the plane, again all the shoving and pushing, trying to find overhead bins to put the carry ons that were all too big. Left Chicago an hour and a half late because of all this. Arrived in Newark and went to my gate. The flight was full going to Israel. You have to do to the security check for carry-ons over again. Security is very tight. On board, people were not cooperating once again. The flight attendant even had to make an announcement that they would reopen the doors and escort people out if they would not be seated. Even with that it took a while for everybody to sit down. The flight was very smooth and peaceful once in the air. Popped a few sleeping pills and slept after the mealalmost all the way until breakfast. Customs at the airport was easy this time and came to my apartment even earlier than I thought I would.
So now I've become a pilgrim in the Holy Land. I have joined Abraham, the mother Jesus, St. Paul, St. Francis of Assisi and lately Pope Francis. A Pilgrim is different from a tourist. It is summed up in St. Paul's verse from Hebrews. "Since you have accepted Christ Jesus as Lord, sink your roots deep within him, build your faith upon him, and overflow with Thanksgiving."
So I give thanks to be here again. To begin the day, I'm going to the Holy Sepulcher for early morning mass and then get some items that I need for the journey of three weeks. After mass, stop at a bakery, I saw last night, go to the Central Bus Station for a transit pass and then stop at some storeks for food, etc and then set out to get my bearings for the time in Jerusalem.