Israel

TBT: Falafel Galore

A beautiful beachIt’s been a few days so I thought I’d catch you up on the goings-on, but briefly ’cause there’s not a ton to tell. I figured I’d upload some pictures and amaze the audience’s adoring eyes instead ­čÖé As the sun setFriday I went to the beach with my suite-mate Rachel, our downstairs neighbor and some friends of his. It was so beautiful and so nice out! We left around noon and didn’t get back until the sun was beginning to set around 6pm. The beach was not very crowded and had plenty of umbrellas and chairs. We lathered on sunblock and sat for a bit before going into the waves. The water was surprisingly warm, like bathwater. We jumped around in the waves and got tossed around a lot when we miss-timed our leaps. It reminded me a lot of when I was little and swimming on the Cape, except much much warmer. At the Golan HeightsOur neighbor taught us this game called “mat-caut” or something like that, that everyone was playing on the beach. It’s basically ping pong without the table, and there are no rules and no winners. It’s pretty exhausting after a while, just hitting the ball back and forth, trying to keep it in the air. Some people played for a long time, they must have a lot of practice. The sun starts to hit the West BankSaturday was quiet, giving myself time to prepare for a big week in front of me. Sunday was a regular class day, long but interesting. After, I went on a very successful shopping adventure for groceries and laundry detergent. I bought a ton, but I think I’m good for about 3 weeks or so, which is fine by me. And I became more familiar with the bus system, the stops and Haifa in general. Kinneret CemeteryMonday was another field trip and we visited the Golan Heights, where King Solomon was defeated, and we heard the story animatedly retold by our teacher. Then we drove to the Mount Barkan Lookout, where we could see for miles. We were actually on the edge of the West Bank and watched the sun rise over it; it was quite cool. Next was the Kinneret Cemetery and Courtyard, which were very important to the labor Zionist movement (which previously I didn’t even know existed). We took a break after lunch and went to swim in the Sea of Galilee, also known as the Kinneret (thus the Cemetery and Courtyard being so close to it). It was lovely to swim around for an hour or so, just after the heat of the midday had passed but still plenty warm for a dip. Post swimmingFinally, we went to the cliffs of Arbel, and we learned about the water systems in Israel. We learned from what resources they get water, what they do with it, and issues related to water. And the view was great, looking down on the town of Magdala, where Mary of Magdalene supposedly was born. Before we left, we learned about the caves that were in the cliffs and how the people used them to hide out when under attack. It really hit me, then, that I was seeing the places were the stories took place; the people lived and died here, grew up and had full lives, hundreds (if not more) years ago. It’s very different in the US, we just don’t have that kind of history available. From the cliffs of ArbelToday was another long class day where we discussed the world wars, but for once I actually learned what was going on in the Middle East during them. Previously, I had always learned about what was going on in Europe, or the Soviet Union, or the US, but never really the Middle East. I had never heard of the UN’s attempt at splitting up the Palestine region into 7 pieces, for example. And after class we talked about Islam and what the Koran has to say about Judaism, which again I didn’t realize they had anything to say about it! It has definitely been very educational already. It's a long way downEnjoy the pictures, and I’ll probably update sometime later this week before we leave on our full-week field trip from Sunday through Thursday next week. From the sound of the itinerary, it’s going to be amazing! I love silly signsMy Hebrew phrase for the week: an-EE lo may de-BER-et eev-REET (ani lo me deberet ivrit). (“I don’t speak Hebrew”) Shalom -Kate The lone tree The caves

Categories: Israel, TBT

Comments are closed.