Kfar Kama

22 Mar

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I went on another trip with the IWC today to a Circassian village in the lower Galilee region. The two-hour bus trip brought us from sunny and hot Herzliya to the chilly and overcast village of Kfar Kama. I learned today that the Circassian peoples orginated in the Caucasus region of Turkey. Driven from their homeland by the Russians many of them resettled in Israel. There are some 4,000 Circassians living in Israel today and Kfar Kama is one of the villages where they settled. We visited the Circassian Heritage Muaeum where we were greeted by our guide, dressed in full Circassian regalia. We were offered some pizza-like treats and unusual but tasty sage tea. We toured the museum while our guide filled us in on Circassian history and culture.

For me, the most interesting tidbit is that the Circassian language is largely onomatopoetic; the words sound like the things they denote. Their original alphabet is one of the most fanciful I’ve ever seen. Eventually the Circassians adopted the Cyrillic alphabet but added a few characters to fully express the sounds of their language.

After our museum tour we watched a charming and energetic folk dance in the courtyard. We then had a most delicious lunch at the only Circassian restaurant in town. (I also learned that the Circassians are known for their pizzas and there are several pizza joints in town.) After lunch, our guide took us for a stroll through the village, recounting tales of the history of the village and the notable black and white mosque designed by a Jewish architect.

Without a doubt, I am finding that there is so much to see and do in this country the size of New Jersey.

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One Response to “Kfar Kama”

  1. Domenica March 23, 2011 at 11:50 pm #

    Interesting tidbit about the language…love the food pics, too. mmmm, snif, snif. : )

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