Mt. Nebo in present-day Jordan marks a bitter-sweet spot for one of the Bible’s most recognizable heroes. In this mountain, God showed the promised land to Moses. But he was forbidden to lay foot on it. He could only gaze.
Mt. Sinai is undoubtedly one of the most famous places in the Old Testament. Several important events happened there. It is where Moses talked to God through a burning bush; where God handed Moses the tablets containing the Ten Commandments; where Aaron was pressured by the Israelites into making a golden calf for them to worship; and so on and so forth.
At one o’clock in the morning on November 11, about 3 dozens of us from our group of 50+ Filipino pilgrims started our attempt to hike to the summit of Mt. Sinai (2,640+ MASL according to www.peakware.com) from the St. Catherine Monastery.
Unknown to us until a few hours later, at least a thousand other people from all over the world were hiking to the summit that very same morning. It was, after all, a typical day in Mt. Sinai.
We spent the rest of the afternoon of our 2nd day in Egypt traveling by bus to the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt, being 90+ percent desert, offers little attractions for sight seeing along its long, dry, dreary, and featureless highways. It’s all sands, sandbars, and the occasional Bedouin shelters.
You doze off for half an hour and wake up with the confused feeling that you haven’t moved an inch, or that possibly you are travelling in circles. The landscape is monotonous and uniform.