It’s not often that I’m speechless, however Day 1 of this trip has left me close to it. After arriving a few days early to acclimate to the time change and spend some time exploring Tel Aviv, I fell a little bit in love with the city. The food, the beach, the kindness of people helping me with directions, the laid back atmosphere, touring the bullet factory in Rehovot and of course the fabulous shopping – what’s not to love?
As much as I was enamored Tel Aviv, I admit that I came to Israel with expectations that I’d be overwhelmed with a sense of ‘coming home’. I’ve had 40+ years of hearing that phrase. I loved every minute of being there but it wasn’t until I returned to the airport to join the rest of the amazing women on this trip, who’d just arrived, that the feeling of coming home started to tickle its way into my being. Seeing the large JWRP banner and having Noa, our trip host, hug me and welcome me home, that my heart started pounding and I began tearing up.
After a long bus ride spent talking to the women from the Israel contingency, we arrived in Tiberius. We got recharged after hearing an inspired speech from Nili Couzens. Her wise words were engaging and powerful and have already impacted my outlook on life.
A group dinner with 200 women from three countries on the Sea of Galilee, under the stars, was perfection. Sharing, bonding, dancing, and allowing myself to just be me, made me realize that although I was thousands of miles away from my house, work and family; it was tonight I was welcomed home and came home.
Posted on: Wednesday, November 9th, 2016
Author: Rabbi David
About: For more and more students in the Chicago area, Rabbi David is like a personal tour guide into the world of Jewish thought. He is passionate about elucidating timeless Jewish texts to the contemporary mind and leading each student on his or her own personal spiritual journey. His inspiring and insightful teaching style, coupled with his sense of humor and warm approach, has attracted hundreds of students since he began teaching on the North Shore 12 years ago. Rabbi David and Ali have five children, and currently reside in West Rogers Park in Chicago.