My Three Days In Gilead By Elmer U. Hoenshel

 -  It was in my plan to travel
that distance by rail; hence my presence at the city railroad

The - Page 7
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It Was In My Plan To Travel That Distance By Rail; Hence My Presence At The City Railroad Station.

The ride to Mezarib, through Bashan, especially that part of it now known as the Hauran, is one of

More than ordinary interest. For the first twenty-five miles the land is literally covered with black basaltic rocks, as is also part of the remaining distance. How it is cultivated I can scarcely understand, for I am sure that the American horse could not be made to serve well here. But I was told that the natives do cultivate it, and that they raise excellent crops of grain. When I looked upon them at work with their crude wooden plows and brush harrows, and then heard that they raise excellent crops of grain, I was satisfied that the land must be very fertile; and I was reminded of a certain humorist's remark about the fertility of some land in Kansas, of which he said, "All you need to do is to tickle the ground with a hoe, and it will laugh with a big harvest." Farther on the rocks almost entirely disappear, and there is spread out a beautiful valley, extending far to the south, whose fertility and pasturage attracted the Israelites on their march to Canaan, and which, ever since, has caused the name "Bashan" to be a synonym for "plenty." And, because of its abundant production of grain, which finds a ready market in Damascus, it has been aptly called the "granary of Damascus."

The manner in which this grain is put on the market is quite novel to me.

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