Israel Journey 4: Update #5

Dear Family and Friends,

Shalom, on Friday we traveled to Tel Aviv. Our first stop of the day was the Diaspora Museum. There we had a lot of fun with the interactive exhibits in the new wing of the museum. We learned a lot about Jews from all over the world! After the museum we went to the Carmel Market. Teens enjoyed a Pizur lunch and time to shop for souvenirs. We had the opportunity to experience the market on a Friday afternoon, as locals prepared for Shabbat. After the market, we walked to Tel Aviv beach to cool off. The water felt great and it was a relaxing end to our day in the city. We went back to our hotel for Shabbat and dinner. Our Friday night Shabbat Committee led a really nice service outside where we could watch the sunset. Shabbat this week was themed “No Worries Shabbat” and teens were encouraged to write down a worry for the upcoming week and then burn it at the end of the service. We concluded the night with oneg, which consisted of snacks and fun games led by our oneg committee.

Saturday was a day of sleep and relaxation. After breakfast, the Saturday morning Shabbat committee led a yoga themed service. We recited each prayer while taking a particular pose that the committee specifically chose for each prayer. After services, teens had free time followed by lunch and more free time. There were many places to hang out outside at the hotel and we took advantage of the beautiful scenery. In the late afternoon, we had the extremely special opportunity to hear from one of the Holocaust survivors staying at the hotel, Moshe Moskowitz. He told his story, and how he survived both the Holocaust and the War of Independence. Teens welcomed Moshe and his wife to our Havdallah ceremony after dinner, and both our group and the couple were really touched by the experience we shared together. We said goodbye to them and headed back to Tel Aviv for a fun night out. Teens had time to get dessert and shop at the Azrieli Tower Mall. We had fun celebrating Rayna’s birthday. We are excited to celebrate the next two birthdays coming up as well.

This morning, we woke up ready for an educational day. Our first stop was the Ayalon Institute in Rehovot. There was a secret bullet factory built under Kibbutz Hill, a huge secret that was kept from the British. This was one of the best kept secrets of its time period. We had a chance to explore the factory and hear about the major players in the success of the factory. After our visit, we drove to Be’er Sheva for a Pizur lunch. As we continued our way to the South, we stopped at Sde Boker, the burial site of Ben Gurion and his wife.

Then we continued along to our accommodations for the next couple of days, Kibbutz Ketura. Here we were warmly welcomed by Kibbutz staff. After an hour to hang out, we learned about five characteristics of all kibbutzim. We enjoyed a quick tour of the kibbutz and cooled off with a pool party and BBQ dinner. After dinner the team building committee led a fun game to conclude the night. We’re all looking forward to more fun tomorrow… !

– Your Israel Journey 4 Staff

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