June 5, 2001

5:30 a.m. and I was awake! There was still several hours before breakfast and our first class and I was not sure what to do. Finally I made my way down to the Jaffa Gate Lounge and started reading "Genesis and the Big Bang". 8 o'clock finally rolled around and Georgia and I made our way to breakfast. It was a beautiful restaurant that overlooked the Tower of David.

At 9 o'clock we were down in the classroom for our first presentation. The room had a mountain scene on one side with stars in the ceiling. It was beautiful. Our first presentation was by Tzvi Raviv, the advisor to the mayor of Jerusalem. He talked about preserving one's identity. For the Muslims the "peace process" is only a tacktical step which Israelies have to fight.

Next Neil Lazarus spoke on the topic of "Seeing is Not Always Believing." Here he tried to emphasize to: QUESTION EVERYTHING! CHALLENGE EVERYTHING! Everyday we can be bombarded by TV as an entertainment that is selling emotions and symbols. If it bleeds it leads. Just make sure you question and challenge everything you hear!

Motti then lead out in a group activity on the topic of "Where are the Romans?" Here we as a group decided that the secret to longevity of Jews versus other civilizations are the following: (In no particular order)

Value of Education
Hard Work
Shared Customs/Culture
Israel (Concept)


At the end of this activity we loaded the buses and headed out for lunch. We went to a park where we ate and played until the afternoon "Rope Challenge" began.

When the "Rope Challenge" was to start we were split by boys and girls, and then split into two groups by birth month. My group sat in a cirle and played name games to get to know each other. One of the first things that happened was Lube noticing the camel! She was so enamored with it that when she got a break she went and payed to have a ride. This then prompted others in our group to get a ride also.

During the name games Chana and Jen had a fun time with war games.

Then we got into more physical activities. It culminated in the actual "rope" challenge.

By 6 o'clock the park was closing and we were off to eat supper. We were taken to a park near Tel Aviv where we were able to run and play. Or just sit around tired.

When we were done eating we were taken around the pond to load into rowboats. It was a fun evening of splashing and rowing under a full (or nearly full) moon.

We then loaded the buses and headed back to the hotel.