I want to thank everyone for their assistance prior to my trip. I got back late Thursday after 6 days in Israel. Yes, that was too short but that's all the time I had. This was not my first trip. The main purpose of this trip was my nephew's wedding. Most of the trip was focused on family. Instayed in Jerusalem the entire time because that is where my brother and his family live.
A couple of follow ups to questions that I posted about prior to the trip. Despite concerns about my Chase debit card, I had no issues getting money from ATMs. My banker in US had said that they couldn't guarantee that I would receive money since Israel was considered "security risk" for banks or something like that.
i did miss my connection from Heathrow to Tel Aviv because flight from Seattle was late. British Airways was able to get me on a later flight that day and upgraded me to business class. But I had 14 hours at Heathrow. I also missed a ride with a family member and a family dinner. This also meant that I arrived on Sat. morning rather than on Fri. afternoon which could be a problem if one is a Sabbath observer. At Heathrow, I opted to get a day hotel so I could sleep. In the future, I would probably plan to do that and take the later flight. Other passengers on the flight to TLV from LHR said that the flight from Seattle is often late.
Since I missed my ride, I took a Sherut to Jerusalem after my flight arrived at 5:30 am. The sherut did take longer to. fill up since it was shabbat. Be sure to have exact amount of money. I bought some juices at the airport after I got money from ATM so I could break 100 shekel bill. Many others had problems. This was a problem returning as well.
For the return sherut, my brother who is a hebrew speaker called to order. I was picked up first due to the location of the apartment I was staying in (in Bakah). I was picked up between 3:30 and 3:45 am for a 7:30 am flight. It really does take a lng time to get through all the departure and security lines at the airport. I recommend patience.
Besides the wedding (which was beautiful) some of the highlights for me were the fireworks over the Old City for Yom Yerushalayim, the Mamila Mall (which was not there the last time I was in Israel) and the halavah from Machane Yehudah.