Monday, March 10, 2008

Things to be excited about!

Rally At the Raleigh:

According to one of my good friends, Lix, this is going to be a, "party poolside with Vanessa Minnillo, Brody Jenner and Miranda Kerr! A non-stop day of celebrity hosted fun including diving for mini dogs, dodge ball, PINK twister and the PINK photo booth!"

Not that I know who any of the models are, or have any interest in celebrity watching but it sounds fun and I have a cover up from pink I've been looking for an excuse to wear.

Birthright Israel:

If you're Jewish like I am, you probably know all about this, but for God's not-chosen people I'll elaborate. You'll carry around a new reason to wish you weren't born to Jesus freaks.

Basically I get to to go to Israel for free. You pay a 250 dollar security deposit to make sure that in case you get in trouble or something, they have some money to back you. Its also collateral to make sure that if they go through the trouble of booking this flight and trip to Israel for you, you aren't going to back out on them.

Here's a sample Itinerary:

DAY 1 / Depart for Israel
- Meet at gateway airport in North America
(New York City, Los Angeles, Toronto, Chicago, or Miami)
- Depart for Israel and spend the night above the clouds

DAY 2 / Along the Mediterranean Coast
- Shalom & welcome to Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport
- Meet Israeli staff and begin travel northwards along coast
- Program introductions at Caesarea's ancient
amphitheater on the Mediterranean
- Arrive to the Galilee & check-in to accommodations
- Group dinner at the hotel
- Evening: Relaxation time and ice breakers at hotel
- Overnight: Kibbutz Guest House Hotel in the Galilee

DAY 3 / History atop the Galilee
- Breakfast at hotel
- Explore the mystical ancient city of Tzfat
- Experience traditional lunch in the Druze Village of Pekiin
- Ziplining from the Manara Cliffs in the Upper Galilee
- Relaxed rafting & tubing on the upper Jordan River
- Dinner along the shores of the Sea of Galilee in Tiberias
- Evening: Cruise on the Sea of Galilee with Israeli dancing
- Overnight: Kibbutz Guest House Hotel in the Galilee

DAY 4 / Journeys on the Golan Heights
- Breakfast at hotel
- Travel eastwards and ascend the Golan Heights
- View of the region from the heights of Mt. Ben Tal
- Break for group lunch en route
- Hike down the lush Jilaboun Canyon on the Golan
- Evening: Tasting & tour at the Golan Heights Winery
- Return to hotel for dinner as a group
- Overnight: Kibbutz Guest House Hotel in the Galilee

DAY 5 / Along the Jordan Valley
- Breakfast at hotel
- Visit the Pioneer's Cemetery on the Sea of Galilee shores
- Swim under waterfalls in the natural pools of Sachne Park
- Break for group lunch en route
- Travel southwards and ascend to Jerusalem
- Evening of culture in Jerusalem
- Dinner & night out on the town in Jerusalem
- Overnight: Jerusalem Hotel

DAY 6 / Exploring Ancient Jerusalem
- Breakfast at hotel
- Haas Promenade - Panoramic intro to Jerusalem
- Ascend the outer Rampart Walls of the Old City
- Walk through King Hezekiah's water tunnel in David's City
- Tour of the Old City's legendary Jewish Quarter
- Group lunch in the Old City of Jerusalem
- Time for reflection at the Kotel (the Western Wall)
- Visit to the Davidson Center archeological park
- Explore Mahane Yehuda marketplace at Jerusalem
prepares for Shabbat
- Return to hotel to prepare for Shabbat experience in Jerusalem
- Enjoy an inclusive Shabbat program & festive Friday night meal
- Overnight: Jerusalem Hotel

DAY 7 / Shabbat in Jerusalem
- Breakfast at hotel
- Optional visit to local synagogues in Jerusalem
- Shabbat lunch at the hotel
- Walking tour of Jerusalem neighborhoods
- Relaxed afternoon back at the hotel
- Seminar: Current trends in Israeli Politics & Peace
- Havdallah / Begin "Part 2" of Israel Outdoors experience
- Night walk and bonfire cookout along the "Burma Road"
trail in the Jerusalem foothills
- Overnight: Jerusalem Hotel

DAY 8 / Remembrance & Redemption
- Breakfast at hotel
- Visit to Yad Vashem's Holocaust Memorial
- Tour of Har Herzl National Memorial
- Group lunch in Jerusalem
- Descend from Jerusalem into the Judean Desert
- Check-in & dinner at hotel along the Dead Sea
- Mifgash discussion with Israeli peers
- Relaxed evening in the desert
- Overnight: Dead Sea Hotel

DAY 9 / Adventures in the Judean Desert
- Breakfast at hotel
- Sunrise ascent to Masada via the Snake Path
- Nature walk to the desert waterfalls at Ein Gedi Reserve
- Relaxation & floating along the beaches of the Dead Sea
- Lunch at the Dead Sea
- Travel westwards to the Negev Desert
- Visit to the desert outpost at Sde Boker
- Camel tour & traditional Bedouin hafla dinner feast
- Overnight: Under the stars in a Bedouin tent

DAY 10 / The Judean Plains
- Breakfast at the Bedouin Tent
- Hike to the desert oasis at Ein Avdat Canyon
- Crawl through the archeological caves of Hirbet Midras
- Tree planing in the forests of Beit Shemesh
- Head for Tel Aviv, Israel's cultural & financial capital
- Closing dinner along the coast in Tel Aviv
- Free night out on town in Tel Aviv along the coast

DAY 11 / The Pulse of Israel in Tel Aviv
- Lunch along Tel Aviv's trendy Shenkin Street
- Visit to Israel's Independence Hall and Rabin Square
- Explore Nahalat Binyamin craft market and street festival
- Walking tour of historic Jaffa on the Mediterranean shores
- Relaxation time along the beaches of Tel Aviv
- Return to airport for late night flight

DAY 12 / Return to North America
- Arrive back at North American gateway airport
(New York City, Los Angeles, Toronto, Chicago, or Miami)

Jealous already aren't you?

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