Ready yourself for a morning surprise
Posted Mar 20, 2013
A nicely-rated hotel near the Old City at a good price...but I found out why it might have been priced so affordably.
It was my first night in Jerusalem and I did not yet understand their bus/train system adequately. So, I took a cab to the hotel and found that it was located in an Arab area of the city. I had no problem with that and presumed that this hotel, which seemed to be in good shape, would be like any other hotel. That was, at least, until 4:00 in the morning.
My body clock (still on U.S. time) woke me a few minutes before 4. Then, as soon as the clock turned to 4 AM, Islamic prayers started playing through a loudspeaker and it was so loud that I thought the speakers were right across the street.
As someone who is not used to that, it was rather unnerving. The singing was very lovely, but it was a reminder that I was not in Kansas (or, well, California) anymore. And it was FOUR AM!! The prayers stopped after a few minutes and started again about 10 minutes later. Another five minutes and they were done....until the scene repeated at 5 AM!
If you either don't mind waking up at 4 AM or prepare yourself with some good earplugs, you'll be fine, I suppose. The room was very clean and the bed was comfy. The breakfast buffet was decent, as well.
After breakfast, I was told that I could catch a bus into Jerusalem "right across the street", but I'd have to wave it down. I did so and (with suitcases beside me) waved at the approaching bus--which roared right past me.