Ten Days of Registration – Day 9

In honor of Birthright registration for the Winter/Spring 2015-16 season (sign up now!) we are posting daily blog posts from the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas trip with Israel Outdoors this past June. Thanks for sharing! And now Day 9…

So I began my day at a lovely 3 am in the morning in at a hotel in Arad. Our roommates and I
packed up and rushed our way down the elevator to breakfast. I chugged a cup of joe, helped
load up the bus and we went on our way.

We pull up to Masada and I was very surprised how very beautiful and HOT is was. It was a true
blessing to see all the ruins of the temples and architecture, tunnels/channels, spa rooms, etc.
most of which was very innovative for them at the time of conception.

We started the our ascent up the Masada and i gotta say it was a great warmup for what lied
ahead….A treacherous decent back down Masada! But first the SUNRISE that was so radiant
and beautiful, that i am running out of adjectives to describe!! Which made it all worth it; the
getting up before the ass crack of dawn and what not…maybe not that extra workout i just “had”
to get in the night before at the hotel, lol….. But I digress, of course we stopped along the way
to reflect and discuss the stunning land and the history behind it which was a great bonus!
After we finally made it back down the beast that was “Snake Path” which ironically seemed a
“tad” longer and more strenuous than the hike up Masada we did prior. But nonetheless, that is
where the fun lies! It is a truly great and satisfying accomplishment when you look back you the
mountain and see where you came from at the top!! And to know where your ancestors have
been and feel the comfort in knowing you have just crossed the same path and land that they
and they’re feet have touched!!!!

After slamming a glorious breakfast we were again on our way just as our nomadic ancestors
expect by a bus, not on foot unfortunately. Our destination? This awesome waterfall, than the
DEAD SEA of course!!! We hiked to the waterfall Nahal David which was a nice little addition to
the Extreme Heat we have all been experiencing since we arrived here On Friday July, 10th.
After the refreshing waterfall we made our way to the infamous Dead Sea to put the theory of
“Floating” to the test, well not really a theory but just wanted to do it one time, oh and indeed we
did cover ourselves in a lovely coat of mud per tradition.

So For the Dead Sea not much to say other than it definitely was one unique experience to say
the least. i covered up in mud and jumped in the water with some of my trip mates and the the
theory was tried, tested, and obviously true. The water was actually scolding hot which was a
big surprise to me but after we got out and rinsed off it was actually soothing to know our skin
was 100 times softer than before we went in! We finished up at the Dead Sea and made our
way over to the Bedouin Tents for a glorious nightcap.

So we start off the Bedouin Tents activity with some good ol CAMEL RIDING!!! Yes that’s right,
Camels! At first myself and many others were a bit hesitant but after finally boarding the Camel
after a couple minutes, we were used to it. It was a pleasant and steady trek through the desert.
After the wonderful camels we came back to the tents for a traditional Bedouin Dinner; my
favorite part of programming of course! The dinner did not disappoint as it was ever so
satisfying especially chicken and rice in a pita with tahini; one of my favorites, and not to
mention the glorious tea and pastries as well!!

After tea we traveled into the desert in the dark as our ancestors did to gaze upon the beautiful
night sky, talk about some astronomy/history and reflect on our day so far and our experiences
at the Bedioun tent which was going amazing so far to say the least! We sat in quiet and though
almost like mediation about the starts and universe and shared those thoughts. After we
traveled back to the tents to finally go a sleepy…Another one of my favorites! See the pattern
here? We sat and spoke about our day/night and finally laid our heads down to rest for the
evening. Lylatov! And see you tomorrow for Ramat Hanegev!