Sunday, October 12, 2008

My Trip To Israel, Part 6


We met 5 Israeli soldiers who would join us for the rest of our trip.
Then we went to Nachal David, near Ein Gedi, and hiked up to some waterfalls. It was deathly hot outside. I must have drunk 10 liters of water!
Then we went to the Yam HaMelach (a guys-only part) where you can float! I did, too. The salty water started burning my body all over when I stayed in for a long time. What kills, though, is to get the water in your eyes, let me tell ya'.
After not properly washing off the nasty water (feeling, not looking. the Sea was gorgeous.) and sweat from earlier, we went to the famous fortress- Matzada. We took the cable car up to the top, walked around a bit, got a tour, then walked down, since the area was closing. It is an incredible story about what happened there.
On to the Bedouins!!
In case you missed a nice sandy hard desert floor from home, here was your chance! Our tent was the "jordanian tent", far far away from the other tents, where other Birthright groups were also experiencing the Bedouins. (we were far from them for tznius reasons.) The ceiling of the tents are made from goat hair, and could cost $80,000!! We ate on cushions on the ground. We had special kosher food. It was basically shwarma on the ground. They spoke to us about their origins, customs, etc. A friend of mine pointed out that we could also make a ton of money, by inviting goyim to our houses and showing them how we make kiddush, blow shofar, do lulav, etc.
Late in the night they had a big drum circle, but we didn't really participate since guys and girls from the other (fry) groups were dancing together in the middle. But later, we kind of had a special time for us guys to drum. I didn't really sleep that night. Let's just say that the Bed-o-uins aren't exactly a Bed-o-roses! We had a small bonfire, next to our tent, and we sang some songs. Inside the tent, it was boiling hot, but outside it was the cold desert air, and freezing. The mattresses we had were two inches thick.
Most of the other groups seemed to enjoy the experience. It's a shame that they only bring them to goyish bedouins, and not to some Jewish hippie type place with drums, and the exact same thing, just a Jewish feeling and experience, but with the same camp-out/drum circle/shwarma from the ground.