Last Friday, we took the students for some surfing and rest time on the beach in Tel Aviv.
On Monday evening, we had a traditional Israeli Poyke dinner. Poyke is a method of outdoor cooking that originated in South Africa, and over the years it has become an Israeli tradition. It is essentially putting everything in a cast iron pot and cooking it for several hours directly in a campfire. Everyone had a great time hanging out, singing, and eating.
On Tuesday, the students hiked in the Ein Prat Nature Reserve. After hiking, we enjoyed a dip in the spring to cool off. Ein Prat is located just outside of Jerusalem in the northern part of the Judean Desert. The combination of desert and natural springs is simply beautiful!
Thursday we drove up to the Upper Galilee together with the Tel Aviv Florentin community. The weather was beautiful and everyone had a great time! We had lunch by a beautiful spring, and took a refreshing dip in the water. We hiked for about 4.5 hours – we were very proud of our students for giving it their all.
After a nice shower and dinner we gathered together for an incredible Talent Show. The students’ acts varied from singing to dancing, stand up comedy, and even out-of-water synchronized swimming.
On Friday, we visited a Druze village called Hurfeish. There we met one of the local residents that taught us about the Druze religion and life in Israel. We learned that Israeli Druze are drafted to the army and consider themselves to be fully Israeli. They are very proud of their IDF service and support of the country. We also had the chance to experience some Druze hospitality, including their delicious tea and food.