Tag Archives: Tel Aviv

Day 9 – Shoe Kibbutz, Cabbage, Yehuda St, Party

On this day we went to a Kibbutz that made shoes. The brand of the shoes is named… Diadora. I bought some boots that I thought looked really tough, and something I could wear while riding a motorcycle :D. I decided they were Kibbootz. Ha.

Then we got a special tour of the factory, which was incredibly interesting. Saw all of the different stations where they made shoes. These people all are part of the Kibbutz meaning they all get paid the same and work as a community.

Then we made a short visit to a water pool that was pretty and nice. People jumped in using a rope, and tried to do all these tricks. I didn’t go in because I didn’t have a swimsuit, but I did find a lighter…

Then had lunch at some fast food side-stop. I didn’t have any money, because I spent all the cash on my boots and I thought my card didn’t work (didn’t work when trying to buy the boots, but I tried it just today and it did work. Strange). So I got some onion rings, which were somewhat satisfying, and other people gave me some food too, which was great.

Then we went to some farm where we were going to pick cabbage for a charity organization. This organization, Table to Table (something like that), sends food to various different other organizations. We volunteered labor to cut the cabbage from the patches, and they dealt with it afterwards. So they gave us all these pretty awesome knives, and taught us how to kick down the larger leaves, pull the cabbage head to the side, and cut the stem. With 40 so people working on this, we went through three rows pretty quickly, and that was it. A lot of people didn’t really like it past the first row, but I personally really liked working. Out under the sun, working up a sweat, getting my hands a bit dirty, and handling a knife. Could it get any better? KNIVES. Anyhow, got back on the bus and the guy talked to us a bit more and we were off.

Went back to the hotel for dinner. Then this guy Neil Lazarus gave this really awesome presentation about the current Israeli political situation. He made his presentation entertaining, and spoke lively, which was enough to hold my attention the whole time. Very effective, and he also talked about a few other things.

Then we got on the bus to go to Ben Yehuda Street for some shopping. They set boundaries and let us loose. Looked in two trinket stores, and found a hamsa for my mom (though I don’t know where it ended up. I can’t find it). Went to a candy shop and got a bunch. Got a bagel and coffee from some shop. The bagel wasn’t that great actually… tasted a bit like sourdough.

Then we all went to a trendy bar, which turned out to be not that great (I think because they had so many people there at once). I got a Long Island Ice Tea, but they didn’t have ice tea so they used Coke. Whatever, still got me pretty bad. Hung out with Jess, and went with her and Meridith and (Coby?) to get REAL potato chips from a nearby place. They were made right in front of us! It was really good too. Went back to the bar and chilled with people before leaving.

On the bus back to the hotel we partied in the aisle-way. There was dancing, and a couple people hooked up. Not me! (damn). Once we got back to the hotel we brought guitars to someone’s door and had a jam session out in the hallway. It was incredibly fun, but as expected the hotel guy came by and yelled at us. We out onto the lawn and he wouldn’t let us be there either because people would still hear us, so we put 22 people into someone’s room and hung out there. Then people decided to head to the gazebo somewhere so we went out in teams. I didn’t think this was such a great idea because we were in mob-mentality mode, meaning not many people would follow and it would disperse the party. I went anyway and there turned out to be only about 6 of us there. We chilled and it was good. A nice view, and people did hookah (I don’t do that).

Then went back to my room and slept.

Day 10 – Movie, Market, Yitzhak, Ending

Got up in the morning and went to some Film director’s showing. He had a couple technical difficulties, which was sad, but eventually they got it going. He showed a movie of a girl getting her name changed because it was depressing. This was an alright movie, but meh, I didn’t like it for some reason. Wasn’t entertaining. Then he showed another movie he made about his dog and some WWI soldier named Finklestein that the guy’s father became obsessed with researching about. I couldn’t connect the two storylines (the dog and the soldier), so I didn’t really like it either.

Anyhow, we drove into Tel Aviv.

We went to the Israel Independence Hall, where they declared independence. First they showed us a lame movie that many people slept through, but then we went into the main room and this woman gave this really fantastic and moving speech about Israel’s independence. She was incredibly passionate about it, and expressed her love for the country. Really a good experience.

Then we went to an open air market, where we first went up and down the more touristy section. They were selling all sorts of hand made trinkets, watches, towel holders, jewlery, etcetera. It was all the same for a long way. I got a chocolate wrap from a vendor nearby, which was kind of similar to the stuff we had at the Bedouin camp.

Walking along, I saw a really cool and narrow junk shop. I looked around and found some really dusty awesome stuff, and then I found one of those small keychain noisemakers that would make the electronic war-like sounds (bombs dropping, guns rattling, in midi-awesomeness) and I needed to have it so I got it for 3 shekles.

Ordered ourselves, and then left for the other market, which was more produce and cheap-crap based. Much more authentic open air market, with people shouting and gross smells. I found some jam that looked like what I wanted to make a stone sculpture of, so I bought it.

We then went to the beach! Which was really nice and beautiful. I went into the water and it was almost perfect temperature. I jumped over, under, and into waves many many times. So fun. Ran in and out of the water. Exhausted myself, then went back to where people where relaxing and chilled there. Took jumping pictures again, which is always fun.

Then we went to Yitzhak Rabin Square, and Irad told us all about the tragedy. It was a solemn visit. We saw the area where he was shot, and Irad illustrated the precise happenings when he got shot. Saw a bust, and a memorial thing. They also put up copies of the original graffiti that was put up the morning after the shooting. Very interesting stuff…

Then we went back to the hotel and fetched dinner. After dinner, some guy talked to us about the Holocaust, in preparation for tomorrow. I couldn’t listen to him at all. He spoke really monotonously and dreary.

After that we had a pre-ending ceremony where we went around the circle and each said our thoughts on the trip. Everyone had touching things to say. I was really moved by Ilan’s speech about how he traveled to a lot of different countries before coming here because he was in search of something, but he finally found it when he went to Israel. I talked about how Israel seemed to be a very personal country to me. It’s a lot like California, it has the climates I like, the people are weird, the money is mostly change and not paper, and there are ruins everywhere. Yep.

After that I chilled with people by that bar for a bit. Everyone seemed exhausted and not much activity was stirring, so we went to sleep.

BUT on the way back 3 things happened. First (and at some other time), me and Jess saw this passed out guy in the hallway, and we tried to get him to go back to his room but he was passed out passed out. Jess poured some water nearby on him, and he didn’t respond much, and she poured a bit on his crotch which was hilarious. Then I ran into some girl who lives in Palo Alto, the town next to mine, and she was there on some other trip. She knew some people I knew, and goes to BU. Got her name and number :P. Thirdly, somehow I’m with Shmulek/Sam and we see the guy still there, so Sam goes to get a pen and writes little circles on the guy’s face. Poor guy, but so funny.

One more day…