Category: Micah in Israel – 2016

10 Days and Counting!

Posted by on June 16, 2016

Good afternoon from downtown Bridgton and Sebago!

IMG_0047Meryl and Alex coming at you from our temporary office, also known as the dining hall. We’re psyched to jet off to Poland and our final destination- Israel! We’ve been hard at work going over forms, itineraries, schedules, more forms, and can not wait for the trip to finally begin! 

Of course, don’t hesitate to get in touch with final questions or concerns. Feel free to email us or call the Camp Micah main line; Meryl is finishing up at school next week, but Mike Churwin and Alex will be here if you need us. We cannot wait to see you all next Sunday at Terminal E for British Airways (3:00 P.M. SHARP!).

All the best, next month in Jerusalem!

– Alex and Meryl

 

Masada, Jerusalem, and NBA players?!

Posted by on July 26, 2015
Dear Camp Micah,
We ended last week at an Orthodox community in the Lower Galilee called Hoshaya. Part of the group was hosted by very welcoming families at Hoshaya while others stayed with relatives all over Israel. The whole group came together on Sunday morning and we proceeded to hike down a cliff (with no ropes!). Jordan Barr thought it would be a good idea to throw his water bottle off the cliff; It wasn’t. Next, we went to a goat farm where we milked mamma goats and made cheese. We also made some salads with some focaccia bread. Afterward, we went to yet another British Mandate museum. Riveting!
On Monday, we went on a Bio bee tour at Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu where we fed donkeys, ate dates, and saw, like, 4 bees in a box. Charlie Goldsmith finally had his first date!( get it)Then we travelled back to Jerusalem for the final leg of our trip (tear tear). We met a rabbi who had nine toes and talked to us about becoming bnei mitzvah. He was 4 years late.
The next day we went to the most famous holocaust museum, Yad Vashem. This took us back to our days in Poland and we learned about the roots of antisemitism. On a happier note, we volunteered at Abu Gosh Children’s Home where we re-painted walls. Sam Marram had so much paint on him that he blended in! After much osmosis of Holocaust information, both in Poland and in Israel, we had the chance to reflect artistically at the Kol Ha-ot center that night.
On Wednesday morning, we went to Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem where we re-enacted the battle during the 6 day war to win back Jerusalem by playing capture the flag using underground tunnels. Jordan Barr, yet again, made a smart decision to run through a bush of thorns. He’s still bleeding. Following that we volunteered at Pantry Packers where we packed lentils and rice assembly-line style for families in need. It was practically the Industrial Revolution. That night we met a cool reform rabbi who helped us reflect on our trip and open up about our Judaism.
Thursday was a big day–we all got re-bar/bat mitzvahed at a conservative temple in Jerusalem. Erica Kleeman had her very first bat mitzvah! Most of us gave speeches about anything meaningful to us. For brunch, we returned to our Jewish roots by eating pork and cheeseburgers. Just kidding, we had bagels and lox. Soon after, we went to an archeological dig where we unearthed 3000 year old artifacts from underground caves. George Patsouris found teeth! Jordan Barr struck again by finding a full, intact plate. web services  Then we rode camels in the desert and had a Bedouin dinner. Bedtime was early because the next day, we would wake up at 3 a.m. to make it in time for the sunrise on Masada.
Little addition: tonight at the Western Wall, we ran into NBA stars DeMarcus Cousins, Omri Caspi, Iman Shumpert, and Chandler Parsons. Some of us got autographs and selfies!
It was quite an eventful week here in Israel, and we hope the first week of second session has been as amazing as ours. It’s bittersweet to know we’ll be back at camp soon, but we’re all looking forward to seeing everyone.
See y’all soon, and Shabbat shalom!
Love, Maya Metser, Enna Spivak, Caroline Safran, and the rest of Micah in Israel 2015

 

Exploring the North!

Posted by on July 16, 2015
Greetings Camp Micah!
After yet another week of exhilaration, recreation, and Israeli education, we believe that we have found spiritual emancipation. We began our holy week with internal contemplation, hanging out in Tsfat with the #orthodoxnation. The boys went into a 500 year old Mikvah with no reservation, while the girls enjoyed an afternoon of deep meditation. Next we got ready for Shabbas great anticipation; we joined an orthodox service on a roof top and sang with full participation. The next day we rested, as God did after creation, and held morning services on a hill top to start the day with an exclamation. Then we ended Shabbat with a pretty jamming havdallah celebration! On Sunday we met IDF soldiers who taught us about Israel’s foreign administration; staring at the Lebanese border was quite a revelation. On Monday we biked for the Save A Child’s Heart organization, raising money to fund for heart operations. For some this bike ride caused much frustration. On Tuesday we hiked to a waterfall filled with water from cloud condensation. On Wednesday we rode a cable car up a mountain and zip lined down in much elation, and then at night we went on a musical boat cruise that had superb flotation. On Thursday we made pita bread and wine at a 2000 year old Talmudic village simulation, and hiked through a river, which was quite an exploration. http://www.campmicah.com/exploring-the-north/Too bad Alexa had to miss out because of her hand inflammation…we wish you could all be here, but you’ll just have to use your imaginations. See you soon, Shabbat shalom, love Noah Stanton, Isaac Appel, Joel Linkewer and the rest of Micah in Israel, peace and salutation.

Tel Aviv, Caesarea, Haifa, Acco and now Zefat!

Posted by on July 10, 2015

Shabbat Shalom!

We had a busy week here in Israel. At the beginning of the week we were in Tel Aviv until Tuesday. We went to Independence Hall where we learned how Ben Guiron declared independence in Israel. Then we volunteered at The Jaffa Institute where we played with kids from struggling families and poor communities. It was an amazing experience to get to know the kids. Seeing them smile and play various games from Frisbee and soccer to hoolla-hooping and playing catching made all of us feel better by doing a mitzvoth. The next day we volunteered at Save A Child’s Heart where kids from different countries came to the facility in Israel for heart surgeries stayed at. We sang and danced, drew various pictures and played games with them to help brighten up their day. The members and volunteers described how their high success rate surgeries which normally cost 250,000 dollars in the US only cost them 10,000 dollars. This has allowed them to complete many more surgeries and save over 3,000 lives.

Following, we visited a kibbutz which had a secret bullet factory underground that produced ammunition for the Palmach. We toured with our awesome guide Kayla as she showed us how the members of the community used intellect and chutzpa to cover up all the noise and machinery while working close under Britain’s watch.

Tuesday we visited the Palmach museum where the group learned about the secret military the Jewish people created to help fight in the war. We all were in awe by the ability that a small motivated group could accomplish.

Next we went to the ancient city of Caesarea. The views of the Mediterranean were incredible there and it was so interesting to learn how the Romans built the city and how they ruled it for an extensive period of time.  That night we slept on the beach, which was so peaceful. We sang songs by the water, watching the sunset, as well as sitting around the bonfire making memories.

We rose early and drove to one of the Carmel Forest Restoration Project sites where we cleared dead vines, branches, and trees which were debris from prior forest fires and to prevent any further ones. Then we went to a Detention Camp where Jewish people attempting to come to Israel were taken to by the British. This was a surprise to many of us because we didn’t have too much knowledge of where the Jews went after the Holocaust. The camp was not a Death nor Concentration Camp; Jews were only held there to live under the eye of the British. The camp reminded us that following the Holocaust, life was not all easy for the Jewish people.

On Thursday we went to the sea grottoes in Rosh Hanikrah near our hotel, and that was such a cool experience. The sights were beautiful and it was interesting to see how the caves were formed from the impact of the water overtime. We traveled into the Muslim quarter and learned about their history and why they are interested in the holy land.

It is now Shabbat and we have arrived in Zefat. We had an amazing but hot day touring around and going to the Mikvah’s, which are natural holy water pools. http://www.campmicah.com/tel-aviv-caesarea-haifa-acco-and-now-zefat/The guys were allowed to take a dip in the waters and speak with a member of the community about his life in Zefat while the girls had a meditation session and spoke with a female of the community. We will soon visit an IDF base near the Lebanese border which has us all excited.

Love,

The twins: Ella & Ethan

 

A busy (but fun!) week in Tel Aviv

Posted by on July 9, 2015

Shalom everyone,

Boy, has it been a busy few days! While the first part of our  trip has been dedicated to touring, these past few days we’ve been working more with the Israeli community. On Sunday, we visited The Jaffa Institute, an educational facility for Jewish children under the poverty line. We played sports and talked to the children… Even though we didn’t speak the same language, we all felt a connection to them and we left with many new friends. Afterwards, we visited a museum that simulated the experience of being blind–the rooms were entirely dark and we were forced to rely on touch, smell and sound to find our way. After dinner that night, we attended a lecture by Israeli economics researcher Assaf Luxembourg, who explained to us the reasoning behind Israel’s important place on the entrepreneurial map of the world. Yesterday we again began with some volunteer work, this time spending a few hours with children in the care facility at Save A Child’s Heart, the organization which we will be raising money for on our bike race later (everyone should donate!!) It was so fun meeting kids who can remain so optimistic and have so much hope even in the face of congenial heart disease. Afterwards, we met up with our favorite tour guide Kayla, who gave us a tour of an old kibbutz harboring a bullet factory, which was used by the Israelis to defend themselves during the British occupation pre-1948. After we were able to shop around the shook and enjoy some delicious falafel. Eating authentic Israeli cuisine did not stop there – we had shakshuka and lamb and chicken kebab for dinner. For evening activity we were visited by Puzzle Time Israel. We split up into teams and solved a series of challenging puzzles, a great work out for our brain. http://www.campmicah.com/a-busy-but-fun-week-in-tel-aviv/Overall, we have been so busy exploring Tel Aviv and trying new activities that we never thought we’d ever be able to do. Can’t wait to embark on our next chapter of Micah In Israel 2015.
We miss you so much!!
shalom,
Noah and Joelle