Friday, 18 February 2011


The BBC must have recently aired a programme in Britain set in one of the settlements on the West Bank, featuring religious fanatics. People must think that Israel is full of extremists, and yes, there are quite a few about.

However, so many people simply want to live at peace with one another. I was chatting to one of our newer workers at the Scots Hotel, who has just finished a 3 year stint in the army, after school. Interestingly, he said that what the army had taught him was that everyone was equal, regardless of ethnic group or religion, and that you just had to be open and treat everyone the same. I don’t think he would see eye to eye with a fanatic from the settlements! One of the joys of the Hotel is the make-up of the staff, with Jew and Moslem, Christian and Druze all working closely together, a paradigm for what could be.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

New starts

At long last the rains came in January, turning Galilee green, though not quite filling the Lake unfortunately. The houses here are built for the long hot summers, so when the temperatures drop, it feels very cold indeed in the house. It is only when you go out, with several layers on, that you discover that it is actually a pleasant Spring Day!

January also saw the departure of two good friends from the Scots' Hotel in Tiberias. Sad, as I related well to them, but at the same time I am happy that they are moving on to better positions. In hotels people are always moving on, and you just have to get used to it. However, new people also come, and January brought a new general manager to the Hotel. Peter is German, but has lived in Israel for 16 years and is married with two children. He has already made a positive impact on the Hotel, and I am enjoying working with him. In many ways, the last several months have been difficult without a manager, and I have spent more time at the Hotel trying to be supportive. We were, however, very fortunate in having our accountant Shaul as acting manager; I think his wife will be glad to see more of him now.

The Scots' Hotel, Tiberias