We took a road trip to the Golan Heights, at Israel's northern boarder, to check out Banias Falls
and Nimrod's Fortress.
My sneak photos of girls with guns
The hike was beautiful and fun, and exploring the tremendous Nimrod's fortress (from the 1200's) brought out our inner Indiana Jones. But the most memorable part was all the young adults (although 18 yr olds look like kids to me now) casually hiking around with rifles. Big groups, all dressed casually in civilian clothes, texting on their phones, listening to ipods and playing around...with huge weapons hanging from some of their shoulders like a mere accessory. We asked someone why they would carry rifles on a casual outing to the waterfall, but his vague response was sort of like, why wouldn't they? The obvious guess is that they were kids young adults in the military...but it still seemed funny for a just-for-kicks trip to a nature reserve. (At least the guns were not loaded.) The area is right on the boarder of Lebanon and Syria, and at times during our trip we could hear loud blasts echo through the canyon from beyond the boarder, just a few miles away. It was a surreal reminder of what is other people's reality, day-in, day-out, just on the other side of the mountain. And a peek into the crazy things to which people right there where we were are accustomed.