la famiglia va a Italia

17 Apr

Over spring break, I met my parents and Mitchell in Italy for our first international vacation together as a family. We spent the first 5 days in Rome and the last 4 days in Florence. I can easily say that this was one of the most delicious and fun vacations I have ever been on. It was great spending time with my family and seeing all that Italy had to offer. In the time we were there, we really saw it all: The Vatican, The Trevi, The Spanish Steps, the Pantheon, The Uffizi, the Borghese gardens, the forum and Colosseum, the Duomo, etc.
So, rather than list of everything we did day by day, i’ll quickly sum some of my favorite parts of the trip.

Favorite Activity: The Tesstacio Food Tour- On our first full day in Rome we went on a 4 hour food tour in an up and coming foodie neighborhood and got a chance to taste all the Roman classics. It was exhausting having to eat all that food but a gastronomic experience none the less.

Favorite Statue: The David. This calls for a story and one of the funnier moments on the trip. Everywhere in the world (US not included) uses army time on digital clocks. The David statues is at the Academia which is run by the same people who run the Uffizi. So, when you buy tickets to go to the Uffizi and the David, they schedule you to do it all in the same day. We went to the Uffizi in the morning ( around 11) and then thought we were going to see the David at 6:45. Our plan was to go back to the hotel after we were done with the Uffizi, rest, see the David and then go out to dinner. We thought it was a little weird that we were seeing the David so late in the day, but we went with it. When we were all resting at the hotel, Dad runs into the room in quite a tiz and announces that we made a huge mistake. We were supposed to see the David at 16:45 aka 4:45 not 6:45. Mom kept saying 6:45 all day long and no one thought it necessary to double check the time. Anyways, the hotel called the Academia and we made it in right before the Museum stopped letting people in.

Favorite City: Florence

Favorite Restaurant: Olio and Convivium- Originally a specialty food store and now a restaurant as well.

Favorite Gelato: The place near our hotel in Florence.

Favorite Pizza: Dar Poeta- Thanks to a GREAT recommendation by Izzy Sobel ( a friend from Michigan who is studying abroad in Rome). We waited for over an hour but it was worth it.

Favorite Pasta: Pasta Carbonara

Favorite Breakfast: Rome Calvileri- I have never seen a spread like this in my lifetime.

Favorite Panini- Gusta Panini

I can keep going and going but I would rather stop and not make myself hungry. I had such a great time and cannot wait to go back!

Leaving my parents was a little sad but now I have gotten back into the swing of things here. The past week and a half home have been exciting, emotional, sad and happy. It was Yom HaShoah ( Holocaust Remembrance day) last week. We were fortunate enough to go see a survivor speak and it was a moving, heart wrenching story.
This past Monday was yom hazikaron (Israeli memorial day) and we went to har hertzel, the national military cemetery to pay our respects to fallen soldiers. Seeing the ages of all the soldiers on the graves really hits home because they are all so young. From sadness to happiness, Monday night was Yom Haatzmaut ( independence day). We party hoped all over the city of Jerusalem. From Ben Yehudah Street, to a house party in Rehavia and then finally a student party on the top of mamilla mall right outside of the Old City. It was truly a night I will never forget.

gotta run to class….xoxox



yam l’yam ( sea to sea)

7 Apr

On March 21 ( wow, that is a really long time ago) Danielle, Emma and I departed for yam l’ yam, more like bus to bus. On the normal Yam l’yam hiking trip you hike across the ENTIRE country, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Kinneret. However, Hebrew U did not think we were up to the challenge. They also did not think we were the kind of kids who would want to sleep outside, cook their own food… in other words: CAMP. I’ll give you a recap of each day of the hike.

Day 1: We leave the kfar at 6:00 am.. i have not voluntarily woke up that early in god knows how long. Not surprising, we do not leave until 7. We get to the hike and are informed that we will be hiking through an area with water that might be, at the deepest, up to our thighs. Ughh… not okay. Well… there was no turning back. After about the first half of the hike I had not gotten wet, no foot submersion for me. My ego was a little big at this point so I decided to try to cross the river a different route that looked like it would allow me to not get wet. The river won. Here is a photo of me after I fully submerged myself.   Image

Well…the rest of the hike my shoes were squeeky. My lululemon leggings, on the other hand, dried really quickly ( props to lululemon for making a great product). After our day of hiking ( more like strolling) we took a bus to Akko and stayed there for the night.

Day 2/3: We hiked up Mt. Meron, the second highest mountain in israel. It was very picturesque and and again…. another walk. I like walking and the scenery was pretty and I had dry clothes, so I was happy.


We spent the night of day 2 (Friday) and day 3( saturday) in Peki’in, a Druze village in the north of Israel. What are the druze you may ask? Druze is a secret religion, with roots in Islam. If you want to convert to druze-ism… sorry, but you missed out because acceptance stopped in 1043. Peki’in was historically a village where Arabs, Jews and the Druze lived together peacefully, but now there is only one REALLY old Jewish woman left. We got a chance to meet her on Saturday when she opened up the synagogue for us to visit. We also visited the cave where Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai wrote the Zohar, the book of kabbalah. Saturday night we had a nice Israeli style campfire cookout. We made something called Poyke. It is basically a stew made out of anything and everything possible..vegetables, beef, potatoes, rice, beans, wine, beer, coca cola, etc. It was actually delicious.


Day 4: Another beautiful walk in a river bed( thankfully it was mostly dry this time) from bus to bus. We ended the hike at Bora Bora beach on the kinneret, which is a really nice private beach restaurant. If anyone is ever looking to host an anniversary, birthday, bar-mitzvah, or cocktail party I highly recommend you do it here. There was also a great spread of salads, cheese and wine waiting for us when we got there…my kind of hiking. We left at around 2:30 and headed back to Jeru. When we got home, I quickly did a load of laundry because the next couple days were pretty packed so I needed all the energy I could possibly get.


The next day, Monday, was passover..Surprise. It just snuck up on us so quickly. In the morning, Emma and I went to get our nails and other beauty treatments ( i.e. eyebrow waxing) done before we left for our spring break trips. I was meeting my parents in Italy on Wednesday ( a blog entry to come about this trip, but if you want I already posted an album on Facebook with all my photos) and Emma was meeting her Mom and Grandmother in Turkey ( how exotic)! We were recommended to go to a place called Eden by one of our friends who had been in the past. She told us it was inexpensive, but we were shocked t how much of a bargain it was. For my eyebrow waxing, upper lip waxing and a manicure , it was a whopping $34. I might have to start flying to Israel cause they did a really good job too.

After our beautification, Emma and I caught a bus to Tel- Aviv. We went to seder at Emma’s Mom’s Friend’s house( SO many connections) in Ramat Hasharon, a suburb just north of Tel Aviv. Her son picked us up from where we were staying, and not to my surprise, he was a Leadership 2004 counselor at CHK, anyone remember Guy? Anyways, the Seder was wonderful and Nurit ( the hostess) was as welcoming and nice  as anyone could have been.

On Tuesday, Emma and I continued our honeymoon vacation together by touring Jaffa and riding bikes on the boardwalk in Tel Aviv.


In the afternoon we met up with Eri and her parents at their hotel and lounged at the pool. Tuesday evening, Eri’s parents took us out to dinner at an amazing fish restaurant in Jaffa called Hazaken ve’Hayam ( the old man and the sea). When we sat down, they immediately brought over 10 different salads and laffa bread and kept refilling them until we finally said no more. We all ordered different kinds of fish and we all got an ENTIRE fish. After dinner, we walked around Tel-Aviv, got some fro yo and eventually made it home.

Wednesday morning I woke up excited, the day had finally arrived. The day the Mayer family would reunite in Rome for our first International vacation together.

more on Italy soon… or more about ALL the food we ate and the couple of places we visited.xoox



in memory of…

16 Mar

this blog post is in memory of my cheetah print grocery cart

you had a short but helpful existence in the life of Dira 653.

You were always strong, reliable and ready to take on the shuk or grocery store when necessary.

Your memory will truly be a blessing.

This week our beloved grocery cart decided to take a spill and the wheel broke off as we were rolling it over a curb after a trip to the grocery store. This was one of the sadder moments that I have had since I got to Jerusalem. We are planning on bringing it back to the store to see if they can replace the wheel. I was surprised that it broke so soon after we bought it because you see so many of the carts at the shuk that look very old, however, the wheels are intact. Image

On a more positive note, my friends and I finally made it to a restaurant we have all been dying to go to called Azura. It is located in the shuk and has been around since the 1950s. It serves classic israeli, homestyle food. Even though it was hot outside, the Matfuniah Kubbeh soup that I ordered hit all of my spots. Kubbeh are dumplings made out of semolina which are stuffed with meat. They are served in a semi sour broth with celery, swiss chard and zucchini. It was so good I went back the next day and got the same thing.


Israel suffered from a heat wave this week so we thought it would be a good opportunity to go to the beach. It was so warm outside, a little to hot for my liking but nonetheless, an enjoyable time. We left after hebrew thursday morning and spent thursday at the beach. Later that night, we went to an outdoor bar on Rothschild, which is one of Tel-Aviv’s nicest streets with beautiful apartments and many small neighborhood cafes. It is kind of a funny story, but I knew our waitress. Not only did she go to my camp, she was also a Chi O.  It is always so nice unexpectedly running into people in Israel. Friday morning we went to a vegetarian, all you can eat restaurant for lunch. It was quite delicious and I will definitely go back. It had a great atmosphere and the food was also very tasty. We then grabbed our bags and headed back to Jerusalem before shabbat began.

In classic Israeli fashion, the bus overheated and broke down 20 minutes outside of Jerusalem. Luckily, the bus driver had pulled over so we were not in any danger and another bus picked us up and brought us home. After a much needed nap, I made dessert to bring to shabbat dinner. This was the third one we have had in three weeks! It is so nice celebrating with all my friends here.

I am eagerly awaiting the next couple weeks. Spring breaks starts on thursday! I am going on Yam el Yam from thursday to sunday. Then Monday is passover and then Tuesday I am leaving to meet my family in Rome for 10 days. It is going to be quite the whirlwind and an amazing trip.

That’s all for now,



shuk every day and every night

10 Mar

I know that I have not posted in a while but not much new or noteworthy has happened in the past two weeks. Classes are going somewhat smoothly. It makes Michigan look like the most well oiled machine that ever existed, but you win some you lose some. I only have class Monday-Thursday which is really nice and allows me a lot of free time to adventure around Jerusalem. I have not gone anywhere new recently, not even new restaurants. For some reason we just always end up at the shuk or at the shuk. Why wouldn’t we though…it has everything anyone could ever dream of! The bar scene at the shuk is really cool too and my friends and I have decided that it is our new favorite place to go out. One of our favorite bars is owned by the lead singer of hadag ha’nachash( famous israeli band) and we are hoping that we will eventually meet him one day when we go.

The past two weekends have been really nice. Last week ( a week ago Friday) Molly organized a huge shabbat potluck dinner with all of our friends. It was so nice celebrating with everyone. We lit the candles, said the blessings, ate a TON of challah and chicken, and sang some songs. I thought it was so cool that we all knew the same songs even though most of us are from different places around the US or Canada or Australia.

Last tuesday, we ventured into a neihborhood right by us…literally a 4 minute bus ride to meet a woman named Rivky. She works for Jeff Seidel(the shabbaton guy) and wanted to show us the neighborhood and just get to know us. She showed us all these little bakeries and shops. There is a huge grocery store there that is much cheaper and nicer then the one near the kfar, a natural foods store and best of all, a little store that sells all american snack foods.

Last friday ( 2 days ag0), we had a shabbat dinner at our apartment. Lots of good food and lots of great company. On Saturday ,a bunch of us tiyuled down to the dead sea for a little bit of sun. Jeru has been really cold the past week so it was much needed. Thankfully no one got sunburned this time, we all learned the hard way that no matter how strong the sun feels here, it will burn you. We floated, mudded and did all of the dead sea things. Zussman and I put block ‘M’s on our pack in mud( look at my cover photo and you will see be able to see a photo)  Ayze yom ( what a day)!



tel aviv for the win….PURIM

1 Mar

I’ve realized that I have been a little lazy about updating my blog on a regular basis, so from now on I am going to make a stronger effort to write more regularly.

Last week my friends and I ventured to Tel Aviv for our 5 day mid-semester break. In the process of finding a place to stay, we toyed with the idea of staying in a hotel vs. renting an apartment.We decided to rent a small apartment near the beach instead of a larger apartment closer to the center of the city. This thing was TINY but super cheap, so for this weekend it served its purpose. In hindsight, however, I think we would have all been happier paying a little more to stay in a larger, nicer hotel/apartment.

We left for Tel-Aviv thursday morning bright and early. We wanted to maximize the amount of hours we would spend lounging in the sun on the beach. And lounge we did, we were all settled on our lounge chairs by 11:30, ready to take in the rays. The weather was beautiful and perfectly comfortable, not too hot and not too cold. We spent the entire day playing at the beach with a bunch of people from our program. We played all sorts of sports, took a walk and lounged. It was such a great day…until the sunburns set on. All of us got burned and we must have looked hilarious, we were all bright red.

the beach at sunset

Thursday night we went out to dinner to a restaurant in Jaffa called Dr. Shakshuka. I had the eggplant and it did not live up to my expectations. However, the multiple salads and pita they brought as appetizers hit the spot. Later that night, we had our first experience with the Tel-Aviv club scene. It is drastically different then the nightlife scene here in Jerusalem, which is much more relaxed. Emma and I, along with a bunch of our other friends, decided to go to a club called Galina on the Namal (the port, where most clubs are located). Normally, to get into a club/bar in the US you would wait in a semi-single file line until it was your turn to get in. Lines in Israel do not function that way. So we waited in a mass of people, until I thought of a great idea, why don’t I tell the bouncers that I was from Los Angeles, maybe that would help. And help it did, we went right in, to what we thought was the entrance to the club. We actually went into the area to pay. Usually the bars at school charge no cover or a $5 cover charge, not terrible. This club charged a 50 shekel( 50/3.7=$13.50) cover charge. We were outraged! What we learned over the next couple days is that 50 shekels to get into a club is not a bad deal at all. Anyways, we strolled around the namal for a little and then decided it would be a better idea to just go home.

We woke up on Friday morning and went to breakfast at a restaurant called Benedicts. There was a lot of hype surrounding this place and it was recommended to me by a ton of people and I was really excited  because brunch is my favorite meal. It was really good, but kind of over priced in my opinion. The decor and vibe of the restaurant was very brunchy and they people there were definitely people who brunched. Anyways, we had a good time! After brunch( more like a late lunch) we walked to Nachalat Binyamin, an artisan craft/jewelery fair near Shuk HaCarmel. It was so fun seeing all of the different types of jewelery and pieces of artwork the different artisans had made. When I was in israel with camp in 2008, this was where I bought my favorite ring. The guy who I bought the ring from was still there, selling the same stuff. I was really excited when I came across the pieces pictured below. They looked exactly like the mesh pieces of art that Dindee ( my grandma) makes.

After walking through Nachalat Binyamin and the Shuk, Zussman, Emma and I decided to go check out the Purim Street Fair that was happening in Tel Aviv. It was nuts! There was a silent rave going on and tons of people dressed in costume. The holiday of Purim, and its observance(celebration), has been adopted by everyone in the country ( both the religious and secular). Usually, there is a split between the two groups which is why the universality of the holiday is amazing to see.


Friday night  we went to a little Mexican Taqueria/Tequila Bar for dinner  located in a neighborhood called Florentin, which is known for its many bars and small restaurants. I have been craving Mexican food since I arrived in Israel so I was so excited to be going. The restaurant was adorable, the drinks were delicious but the food was so-so. Regardless, we enjoyed ourselves.  Rachel, Emma and I decided to meet up with some of our friends at a club called Seret. Oddly enough, it was located in a mall….classic Israel. So we got there, found the line or more like a mass of people waiting in line. We had exact instructions of who to talk to at the door and everything but it was nearly impossible to wait comfortably. Neither one of us were really intent on going after seeing the Jersey Shore/Pauly D-ness of the people around us.  All in all it was a great night, we were all so exhausted from the day that it was probably a better idea that we didn’t go into the club.

On Saturday morning, we went to a really cute restaurant in Jaffa called Puah. It was very rustic and homey on the inside. They made everything in house, sounds like a good place to me. They brought us freshly sliced challah, which was delicious. I got a classic Israeli breakfast (Eggs, Israeli salad, cheese, etc) and loved it! We then walked around the Neve Tzedek neighborhood. The restaurants were packed with people but most of the stores were closed, which was a blessing in disguise because they looked like great stores.

Saturday night, Eri, Zussman, Maor and I went to sushi for dinner at a place called Moon Sushi. It was swanky and delicious. After dinner we met up with a bunch of our other friends who we came to Tel Aviv at Jeff Seidel’s infamous Tel Aviv Purim Party. It was a lot of fun!

Sunday morning woke up and decided to have breakfast on the beach. On the beaches in Tel Aviv there are many restaurants that have outside sitting areas with lounge chairs, tables, umbrellas, etc. We went to the place that we had been to on our thursday beach day. It was more like a feast than just a breakfast. We had eggs, bread, yogurt with fruit and granola, cheeses, israeli salad, coffee and juice all for 52 shekes($14). The food was great and so was the scenery. It was a great way to end a great weekend in Tel Aviv.


After breakfast we packed up and eventually made it home. One of mine and Zussman’s friends from Michigan,Noah, who is studying at the University of Haifa ( just north of Tel Aviv), met us at the bus station to come back to Jerusalem with us. This is his first time in Israel so for the short time we had with him that day, we wanted to give him a very Israeli experience so we took him to the shuk, got some gummies, some marzipan and lunch at Pasta Basta.

Sunday night we made dinner at home and then Rachel, Zusman and I met Yoav and his friend at a bar. Jerusalem celebrates Purim the day after the rest of the world on Shushan Purim. I am not sure why exactly, it has something to do with Jerusalem being a walled city in the olden days. But the streets were packed with people in costume. We didn’t stay out too late because we were so exhausted from our trip to Tel Aviv.

On Monday we walked to the old city ,and the purim celebration continued. Everyone was in costume and it was so busy. Monday night we went to a Balkan Beat Box Concert ( an israeli band). It was so much fun! We didn’t really know their music but their energy was amazing, I have never seen a band like them.

Tuesday morning school started for good. Real classes, a real schedule. But I am ready for it. I like being scheduled, with responsibilities and things to do. My classes seem really interesting and I am excited to get learning. On Tuesday I had my Arab Israeli Conflict class and Wednesday I had kabbalah.

My last thursday was spent getting my rav-kav(bus pass) and tiyuling around Jerusalem with Eri. We got the deal of the century at the shuk….6 cucumbers, a large zuchinni, 6 tomatoes and 7 persimons all for 10 shekels ( $2.70).

Well….that is all the news from the holy land.

shabbat shalom



wine, cheese, atv and much much more

17 Feb

Wow…I can’t believe its been over a week since I last posted. So much has happened and i’ve been super busy, so I’ll try to catch you all up as quickly as possible.

Last weekend ( January 8-9) I went to the north for a weekend full of wine tasting/atv riding/ shabbas l’chaims and much more. We began the weekend(Friday) bright and early so we could make it all the way to the Golan heights before shabbat started. We made it to the Adir Winery at 10:00 am. It was 5:00 somewhere in the world. We had such a great time, acting like somalliers, describing the different wines using the words”woody”,”complex”, “oaky”, etc. The winery was also a dairy, which made all their cheeses from goat’s milk. I was in heaven, drinking wine and eating cheese all before 12:00, game on!


After the winery, we drove for about 30 minutes to the ATV place. We ate a nice picnic lunch and then took on the ATVs. Before we took off for our ATV ride, we quickly reunited with the students from Tel Aviv University who were also going on the shabbaton. One of my friend’s from camp, Taylor, is studying abroad at Tel Aviv this semester, and it was so great to see her! I drove/rode a 3 person ATV that reminded me of a jacked up golf cart with Zussman and Andrew/Maor. We had such a great time tiyuling/driving around the north. The scenery was beautiful. Classic israeli mix up:We drove to the top of a mountain, and the guide told us to all get off our ATVs and have a point of view. It was actually a very pretty lookout point, we were able to see Syria and Lebanon in the far distance.


We then made our way up to the hostel that we were staying at. After a mix up with the rooms, we were settled. Eri, Zussman, Rachel and I had a little room to ourselves. Unfortunately, there was no heat. This was going to be a challenge for everyone, especially Eri. She has not had the fortune of having to live in the frozen tundra aka Michigan, and adjust to the cold weather. We got our shabbos gear on and ventured to the pre-shabbos l’chaim session ( shabbat pregame, use your imagination). The alcohol was flowing like a Sammy-Chi O Football Pregame. It was quite a scene. We then went to shabbat services and  had a wonderful dinner.

The next day we woke up late, 11:00, just in time for lunch! After lunch we broke out into discussion groups split by university and by sex. We got the chance of speaking to a woman named Malka Channah, a 24 year old woman who is a B’al Teshuva (someone who has become more religious later in life). It was great hearing about her religious journey. She also had a really cute baby named Kodesh Simcha ( holy happiness… no comment). After our discussion, we took a tour of the Moshav the hostel was located on called Keshet. It is idyllic, the rolling hills went on forever and there were little creeks running through the mountains. On our short tiyul we went to an old bunker that had been used ages ago to fight for the country. We then went to have an early dinner, had havdallah and made our way home. It was a really fun, but was one of those vacations that you needed a vacation from.

The school week was just a normal week full of bochans, grammar and more vocabulary. What a joy! I actually really like Ulpan and am going to be sad when it ends on Wednesday. Other than learning more hebrew, we conqured the shuk. We finally found vendors that give you great deals. 2 shekels for a HUGE stalk of celery, what a bargain! 184359_10151494269400985_1347981161_n

We also made our way to Sushi Rehavia, again. It is to die for! We also successfully booked a hotel for our mini-vacay to tel aviv for this weekend. I am so excited to go! It is going to be Purim, aka Israeli Halloween. As if we didn’t get enough of Halloween this year ( 8 days).

Tomorrow in Ulpan, we are having a mesibah(party) for all of the classes for the end of the term. Each class has to perform something and my class has decided to sing the song We are Young by Fun., translated into hebrew. It is going to be quite a show.

everything in the holyland is as sweet as honey,


PS: Shout out to J.BURT. It is your 21st birthday on the 19th. Rep the PC hard tomorrow.

week 2.5- success

7 Feb

Since I last posted, i have had a very CHK(camp hess kramer) week. On sunday, I had the pleasure of spending the afternoon with Emily Alford, who is one of my good friends from camp. She just finished a 5-week eco-related course at kibbutz lotan, just one of her many adventures on her gap year. We spent the afternoon touring the city, old and new, and it was so wonderful to catch up after not seeing each other for a long time. We got to the kotel at around 4:00 in the afternoon, the sun was just starting to set and cast a beautiful light on the entire space. A bride was at the kotel, dressed in her wedding gown, going to pray before her wedding. The groom was doing the same thing, just on the mens side. Most of the women who were at the kotel approached her, asking her for her name, so they could give her a bracha before her wedding. I thought it was such a beautiful tradition.

Me and Emily A. at the Kotel843018_10152480156945254_1025085172_o

On Tuesday, I made a spur of the moment decision to visit Lior, my co- counselor from camp this summer. She lives in the most adorable moshav(town) north of Tel Aviv. It had been way too long since we had spent time together. She first took me to a scenic overlook of the Mediterranean.


After that we walked around a local mall. Then I made the spontaneous decision to get my cartilage (ear) pierced (surprise mom and dad). She took me to a local place, and it didn’t hurt at all. We then went to dinner at a restaurant in her neighborhood and ate pizza sambusas, the Disraeli version of a calzone. Two of my Leadership campers from this summer, Noa and Amit, live in Tel Mond( Lior’s town) so they joined us for dinner as well and it was so great to see them. After dinner Lior and I went to one of her friend from high school’s house and then we went to hang out with Noi, another friend from camp. I stayed at her house overnight and went back to Jerusalem in the morning, planning to be in class on time. However, the rainy weather slowed down all the buses, making me really late. So instead of going to class really late, I decided to take a mental health day and took a nice nap, went grocery shopping and then to the gym. Wednesday night, as per usual, we went to the Wallenberg Social Club. It was another really fun night out with all my friends here at Hebrew U.

After Ulpan, Emma, Rachel and I walked all around Jerusalem, eventually making it to Emek Refaim. Our main goal was to see a neighborhood built by a man named Moses Montefiore, an english ( and jewish)philantropist. Around 1900, he decided to build a city for the Jewish people, located right outside of hte gates of the Old City. At the time, Old City was overcrowded and the conditions were difficult. The homes he build were beautiful, however, their inhabitants were nervous to live in them because it was not considered a ‘good’ neighborhood.  The homeowners would be in their homes during the day, but go sleep at their relatives homes in the old city at night. The homes have been kept in very good condition and the architecture is very unique.

Tomorrow, we leaving bright and early at 6:30 to go to the north for weekend on a Shabbaton organized by a jewish organization that has branches at all the big universities in Israel. We are going to go ATVing and wine tasting tomorrow before shabbat! I am even more excited to see Taylor Wilson, one of my friends from camp/michigan. She is studying abroad this semester at Tel Aviv university and it will be great to spend some time with her.