My magical journey continues!

Four days into my trip, and I’m renewed and more inspired than ever. I departed from LAX sunday morning at 9am, and arrived in Tel Aviv Monday at 6pm. We traveled for 27 hours. After our long commute we packed tight into the bus and headed for Kibutz Gvorot which is 20 or so miles from Gaza. Here we stayed for the night and were able to go on a brief tour of the campus the next morning. This kibbutz relies on exporting fresh milk and oranges for it’s income. After our short tour of the kibbutz we headed to the badlands and enjoyed a hike in the deep terrain of the canyon surrounded by a slew of trees that were planted by the JNF. Looking up into the sky we could see hundreds of raptors, who were preparing to prey on mice noshing on the fresh wheat growing in the fields from the rain storm which beautified the gorgeous terrain. We traveled to Sderot, where we we able to enjoy a brief lunch and stopped by a school to see with our own eyes how school’s protect themselves from Quasam rockets that are fired into this city which make impact with dozens of houses. Over 1,000 miles hit structures in this town every year, and because of this many have fled into other cities to avoid enemy attacks. The town is slowly detrieoating beacuse of lack of jobs and resources. The children suffer from mental trauma growing up where they have to run to bomb shelters to protect themsleves from terrorist rocket fire. This was indeed emotional to hear the stories and see the bomb shelters residents of this town use for shelter. following sederot we headed to the ramon cater where we enjoyed camping out under the stars.

We woke up today, hiked up the mountain range and down through the river bed. We continued for a few miles, until we met u with the bus. We hooped in and traveled to our camel trekking location, and enjoyed an hour of riding. Following the camels we headed to Ben Gurion’s tomb where we had listened to a brief story of the impact this man had on teh vision and creation of Israel. Now we are in Ayn Gedi youth hostel, preparing for our sunrise hike up Masada. I am so inspired by the selflessness of our guard/medic, tour guide and bus driver. These Israeli’s work day and day our to make sure our time is maximized.

Half the week is gone now… (1/30/12)
I sit in my bed on the verge of tears thankful of this opportunity. I am in love and can’t believe I have three more months of this. In Jerusalem a few days ago I heard a group of people rapping in the streets. They were chasidic jews. I joined them in beat boxing and then busted some rhymes as a crowd circled us. I was surrounded by Jews from all over the world embracing this special moment. There will be dozens more of these moments to look forward to in the new future.