Dan Israel (2003)

We made a slight detour from the highway to branch down to the Ovda Air Force Base. That’s where I lived for 2 years back in the early 1980s, when we lived in Israel. I hadn’t been back since, so I was looking forward to seeing it. Of course, as it’s a functional airbase, we couldn’t get on the actual site, but we were able to see the old raquetball court, softball field, and the remnants of where the family housing hooches used to be! It was really cool since I actually could recognize and remember the surrounding mountains and stuff. The airbase had built a civilian terminal, to accomdate larger flights that couldn’t fly into Eilat. Sadly, the terminal was closed down for now due to the bad drop in tourism. We then backtracked a bit to the highway, and continued down into the Arava Valley, where you could see the various Kibbutzim growing stuff on the desert floor. There was even a forest of palm trees! Unreal! After a stop at the Yotvatah shop (yum!) we continued on down to Eilat.