Yesterday we departed our beautiful hotel in Jerusalem and headed towards Mt Herzl. While there, we visited the gravesites of Theodore Herzl, Shimon Peres, and American Lone Soldier Michael Levin, along with many other men and women who dedicated their lives to the creation and preservation of the State of Israel. Following our trip to the National Military Ceremony, we ventured back to Machaneh Yehuda for lunch and shopping in the market.
After enjoying delicious rugelach from Marzipan Bakery, we were on our way out of Jerusalem and into the Negev, the largest desert in Israel. Before heading to the Bedouin tents, we stopped at Sde Boker, a beautiful view and the final burial site of first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. Finally, we arrived at our tent and enjoyed a Hafla-style dinner in traditional Bedouin fashion. We took a short walk into the desert and had a thought-provoking discussion about our relationships with G-d.
After finishing up programming for the day, we taught our Israeli friends how to make smores and enjoyed eating our treats by the campfire. We packed into one giant tent and enjoyed the rest of our night together. It was another day of learning a lot, forming stronger relationships, and dreading the ending of this incredible experience.
-- Hayley Katzenstein
The Brody Jewish Center, Hillel at the University of Virginia, is the focal point in a renaissance of Jewish life for the 1,000 Jewish students on Grounds.