The capital of the Negev region, Beer Sheva, Israel, is a frontier desert town 45 mi/75 km southwest of Jerusalem. It is also the home of one of Israel's five universities, the Ben Gurion University of the Negev, with thousands of students from all over the country.

The town is best seen on a Thursday—that's when the Bedouin market is held. The market site is as ugly as can be, but it's a great place to people-watch, as Bedouins arrive from throughout the Negev to buy supplies and sell their beautiful embroidery and craft items.

Driving out of Beer Sheva in any direction, one is amazed by the immense barren landscapes of the Negev Desert. But this is a desert full of life, with shacks topped with satellite dishes serving as permanent homes for the once nomadic Bedouins and their free-ranging herds of goats and camels.

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