Riley, Belle and Gabi
Our Day 2 started bright and early at 5:23 a.m. when a few jet-lagged 8th graders decided to throw a party on the second floor of our hostel. Around 8:00, we hopped on the bus to head over to the Tel Aviv Innovation Center where we learned about new inventions and successes in Israel. The students thought it was really cool to interact with new companies such as a Pillcam and a company that pulls drinkable water out of air. During our time at the Innovation Center, we stopped at 10:00 AM for a two-minute-long siren to commemorate the Shoah, as it was Holocaust Remembrance Day here in Israel. We thought it was one of the most moving and important experiences of our Jewish journey. This was a very chilling moment for our grade and brought us closer to each other and to Israel.
We then ventured to the new Yitzhak Rabin Center where we had our second party of the day to celebrate Jenna’s 14th birthday, outside on the grounds with an amazing view of the city! Inside the Center, we learned about the last 100 years of Israel’s history, through the eyes of one of Israel’s most cherished and celebrated leaders, Yitzhak Rabin, who was sadly assassinated in November 1995. After we visited the Center, we made a quick stop at Rabin Square to see the spot where he was assassinated. Following the square, we had our first pizur lunch around Yitzhak Rabin Square filled with tons of chicken schwarma and Aroma coffee.
Then we headed to our three-afternoon electives: a bike tour, a graffiti art tour, and a spice market tour! Those of us on the biking tour had a peaceful bike ride on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and beautiful views of Tel Aviv. All around it was just good vibes. On the graffiti tour, we got to see all the different graffiti art in South Tel Aviv. Quick culture shock – graffiti is seen as art in Israel. The group touring the spice market got to explore Levinsky Street, which is famous for all of its spice shops, most of which are owned by immigrants from Persia and Russia.
We ended the day with a relaxed hour and a half of freshening up, playing in the park across the street, and packing for our big day of exploring the Holy City tomorrow. After a chill dinner and a nice journaling session, we concluded with a meaningful conversation reflecting on the day. Then we hit the hay! Good night, signing off is Riley A, Belle L, and Gabi J.