Today was a day of adventure. We were true tourists in Israel. The day started with a bus ride to Masada. Wow. It was insane. Due to time constraints (and heat and fatigue), we took the cable cart up. It was utterly spectacular. The amount of history that sits on top of that mountain is beyond. We then went to the Dead Sea. All I can say is that it was one of THE coolest experience I’ve ever had. We rubbed Ahava mud all over our bodies and carefully entered the salted sea. Floating in this body of water was like being in a virtual reality game. It defied the physics that we know. And if you scoop up sand from the bottom of the sea, it’s salt, large pieces of salt! And once we got out of the water, our skin was so silky smooth. So so cool. A quick rinse in the outdoor shower, and we were off to a Bedouin experience. This consisted of making pita and riding a camel. Yes, I said, riding a camel. This too, was a once in a lifetime experience. I rode in the back, and my friend Ora rode in the front. We hung on for dear life as the camel hurled us forward. I laughed so hard and continued to laugh at all the hysterical pictures that were taken of my friends and I.
Filthy dirty, we headed back to our hotel to clean up for supper. Dinner was at this incredibly awesome restaurant called Crave. So fun and such a cool menu. We sat outside and sang Israeli folk songs all night. It was so patriotic. We had dinner with 3 of the Israelis that were on our bus. Each tour was privileged to be paired up with 4 Israelis that spent the entire week with us. Daphna, Nadia, Haggar, and Yifat added such incredible insight into our trip. To be able to have the perspective of Israeli women from different backgrounds added a much appreciated dynamic. And the small world that we live in, Daphna’s parents are close friends with my husband’s uncle and aunt in Belgium, and Nadia resided in Montreal and went to McGill! This Jewish world is oh so small. One of our favorite things on this trip was discovering people we were connected to. Six degrees of separation but more often 2 degrees!
I’m starting to get sad that my trip is ending. Having last been in Israel, I barely remember anything. This trip will be different. The experiences I’ve had, the friendships I’ve made and the memories I’ve created will last a lifetime.
Dr. Leslie Solomon
Montreal, QC, Canada