Blog #3: August

What is your day-to-day life like? Where do you live? Who do you interact with? What tasks do you complete?

Shalom! I am writing to you from the heart of Israel: Jerusalem. While I have been in Israel for sixteen days, I am still getting settled. The past few weeks have been jam-packed with Jewish holidays, orientations, adjusting to life in Israel, and meeting new people. I’ll share a bit of a timeline:
September 2-10 I was quarantining in a place called Neve Shalom.
September 10-12 I was on a small trip to Tel Hai to meet the rest of the people in my program, even those who are starting their years in Tel Aviv.
September 12 I moved into my home base for the semester, Kiryat Moriah (located in Jerusalem). My program is not the only one living there, so we have met other Jews our age from all over the world: Israel to Guatemala to Portugal. Over the past week, our program has been in orientation in small groups, and we are learning the ins and outs of life here. For example, I am figuring out there bus system, the conversion between dollars and shekels, and the area we are staying in (which is right near the Old City). I will include two pictures of my view of the Old City, one taken during the daytime and one at night.
For the past holiday, Yom Kippur, I stayed with my family in Modi’in. This was my first Yom Kippur spent in Israel, and it was very special and different. I enjoyed seeing how my family here follows the holidays compared to how my family does back home. I loved spending time with my cousins and even meeting my cousin’s friends.
For the next holiday, Sukkot, I will be joining the entirety of my program on a small trip down South, and then we will return and have the rest of the holiday off up until October. Starting then, I will begin classes and develop more of a routine schedule. I am excited for the next few weeks and also to see how everyone else in our GYP is doing!

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