EHA’s 5777 Maccabiah games are underway! Maccabiah is a crown jewel of informal education for a reason: it creates huge opportunities for students to shine and display leadership and abilities in less conventional arenas. Students that don’t always find that they shine in one academic area are suddenly celebrated and succeeding in whole new arenas! All types of learners and leaders find expression and it is why we love it as a staple of good education.
Shabbat. Shabbos. What do these words mean to you? This Shabbat started with a trip to the Kotel. At the holy Kotel we danced and davened, and it was super legit. We came back to the youth hostile where we were served a beautiful dinner complete with a chupa schnitzel (editor’s note: that’s Sarah’s special phrase, an inside joke — RYG). We ended our night with an oneg where we played games and smiled and cried and stuff.
On Saturday we all woke up to the beautiful sound. It was a sound of “we woke up 30 minutes late so you have 5 minutes to get ready”. It wasn’t stressful because whether we have 5 minutes or an hour to get ready I and someone else from our room will still take 20 minutes to sit up, and that’s ok. We walked and talked and after a long tiring 15 minutes of walking we made it, we made it to a Shul where Jews congregate to pray. We ate a yummy kiddish, and were welcomed by the rabbi. Then we came home ate lunch, went on a walk to a train thingy, slept on suitcases, and then we ate some food we all bought for each other in the Shuk, had a picnic whilst watching the sun set from a view that was spectacular (the Tayalet/Haas Promenade with a view of the entire old city and surrounding mountains- RYG). Then we said havdallah, packed and were on our way to the airport. It’s been a blast!
Friday, April 28, 2017 | Yom Shishi Erev Shabbat Kodesh
Today we went to a shul for davening and after went down to south to S’derot on the border with Gaza and saw what it was like to live there because they had rockets being thrown at them like 5 or more times a day and a lot of kids were traumatized because they would get woken up and had 15 seconds to get sheltered. We got to play and volunteer at a preschool there and chase the kids and sing with them! After that we went to the shuk Machane Yehudah and a lot of family and friends came to see us. We got to go shopping for Shabbat with everyone else, and bought all sorts of things for lunch. Now it’s time to get ready for shabbes and then we are going to the kotel to daven and eat food, so everyone have a good shabbes! Also I would like everyone to wish the Blues luck in the second round and they are playing tonight, thank you! See you all soon!
We started off Thursday by davening at the Western Wall. After that we went to volunteer at a place that I don’t know what it’s called to pack food for poor people. Our group for sure packed the most bags. When we finished we went to the blind museum. it was interesting. At the blind museum we did a tour on what it felt like to be blind, and I really enjoyed how comfortable I felt, it was really interesting. After that we went to an art museum that was the spot where hey declared the state of Israel and learnt about the history of Israel. Then we went to the first school in Tel Aviv. After that we shopped in a big shuk after then we went to Ben Yehudah and shopped around, then we came back to the hotel to sleep.
Today we went to the kotel for a little bit, the stones were bigger then I thought they would be, soon after we took a tour of the kotel tunnels to see how they built the city … On top of a mountain, so Herod wanted a huge platform for a huge temple on top of Har moriah, but the problem was that the mountain was two small for his building so he decided to build a new foundation, the western wall were everybody daven is only a very small part of the whole wall of the western retention wall! But the reason why we daven at this wall Is because they say it is the closest thing to were the beit hamikdash and the kodesh HaKedashim would have been. After we toured the kotel tunnels we went to the bait hamikdash exhibit of all of the Kailim that were exactly made according to the rules to be ready for the third beit hamikdash!! It was very interesting and amazing to see all of the details in each of them and how they weren’t able to re-create the Aron because it’s not allowed. This exhibit was absolutely once in a life time experience. And finally my favorite part of this day, A couple of people accidentally bought four pies of pizza instead of four slices and had to walk through chizkiyahu’s water tunnels with it. We ended our day visiting Sara’s family all made from St. Louis! It was a long day walking around everywhere and an awesome one.
Today we started waking up at 4 am thanks to Connecticut group then went back to sleep and then woke up from a meowing peacock and from birds and the cold but it was all good👍! We went to Daven and then went to eat breakfast we quickly ate breakfast and went to camel ridings where Jeffrey got eaten by a camel but he’s okay. The camel ride was a ton of fun! We went on our way to Masada where we learned a very complicated song(the only word in the song is Masada) then after learning a lot about Herod the great we found a Torah scribe who we got to talk to and ask him questions and he wrote all of our names in Torah writing and was very generous. He works inside Masada so he gets a lot of exercise each day! We took the long path down Masada called the snake path while singing “Masada” loudly so others can join. After Masada we went to the Dead Sea, ouch! Our cuts stung so much! After cleansing our faces we went to קבר רחל which Rabbi Green told us a story about a daughter whose wedding was the next day but she and her father were in a terrorist attack so she wasn’t able to walk down the isle but her wedding dress was made into a covering to the Aron so the girls went to see it and took pictures for the boys and davened and then went on our way. We dropped off Dr. Nir (our medic) and went to Kiryat Moriah in yerushalayim and designed our sweatshirts! Oh, and went to sleep! We also saw cats that we didn’t touch them because rabbi said no😭.
Today was Yom HaShoah, and on our way to volunteering, which I will speak about later, there was a siren that went off at 10 AM to remember the Holocaust. After that, we went to volunteer cleaning up the forest where one of the people from the קקל explained to us that after the forest fire they had, they are doing everything they can to protect the trees by cutting the lower branches off which we cleaned up out of the forest. We also went to and learned about where Shaul fought and died. After that we went to a water hike in the lower Galil and they also had theses pipes that you could go into like a water slide that was really fun. Then, we went to the Bedouin tents where we learned about Bedouin culture and their lifestyle. We also went out farther into the desert where Rabbi Green showed us a way to meditate which was really cool. After that, we had a bonfire where we roasted marshmallows and sang a lot of songs!
Today we started the day by going on an amazing hike in the Upper Galil! In the middle of the hike we got to climb through a cave. In the cave Rabbi Green and others decided to try to scare me, but they couldn’t. I’m invincible. After the cave we walked through a small stream and played an intense game of “wah” . Then we drove to Acco and had falafel for lunch. Afterwards we had a walking tour through this beautiful city. First we went to a really tall wall that had protected Acco for hundreds of years. While we were at the wall Rabbi Green decided it would be funny to spit water at us, but once again he failed and I spat water at him. Then we went to the Ramchal shul and learned his philosophy and davened mincha. We then went to the beach, which wasn’t exactly a beach. The ocean was very fun, though the ocean got in a fight with us a bit, a couple of bumps later we are all good!! Later we had a Yom HaShoah tekes led by our madrichah and tour guide. Today was awesome!!