Shalom, Arayot Parents,
Sadly the time has come for our final blog post. This last week is not a dull one, because it is MACCABIAH (Color War)! The accumulation for maccabiah breakout started with the rosh aydahs (unit heads) making small changes to everyday things and activities around camp. We flipped the salad bar and the pasta bar, moving the nish nush (snack) location to next to the goat pen, and even having dessert for breakfast! The last step was Zimriyacapella on Tuesday night where Maccabiah was officially broken out! The kids were broken up in the teams which are Nigleh (revealed) and Nistar (hidden). They had the opening games of Lamalla Lamata (over/under) and it finally kicked in that Maccabiah has officially started!
Now back to Tuesday, our final Achla Yom (trip day) was an absolute success! The bus drive was a little long (around an hour forty minutes), but it was worth it. It was a pretty easy hike and the view was amazing!All of the chanichim were able to swim in the lake and shout out to Ethan for standing in the middle of the lake the whole time so the rest of the counselors could tan! On the way down we thankfully had zero injuries and very few slips! Tuesday night as you all already know was Maccabiah breakout and Wednesday we dove straight into the spirit of it!
Wednesday and Thursday were both normal mornings but the afternoons were quite the opposite! On Wednesday we did sumo wrestling with pillows stuck in between the persons arms and the way to win was to pop the balloon that was in the person’s shirt. Then after that we did something called horse races where counselors had to do ridiculous tasks and the campers bet on which counselor would win. A funny example of this was when two of the Arayot boy counselors: Ari KC and Josh Gladstone did a crabwalk race, it was exhilarating and Josh ended up winning! Wednesday night was Chidon (quiz show), where each team picks campers from each aydah and they face off one ayda at a time. Boy was it a fun and educational evening!
Thursday afternoon we had peulat masoret (tradition activity), this summer they were fortunate enough to play human battleship on the Agam (lake). It was probably the wildest and most entertaining activity to watch all summer! We had campers in boats and other campers on the dock and on the rafts and the goal was to hit the campers on the other team in boats with a dodgeball. There were dodgeballs all over the Agam, but we made sure to get every single one. That night was Dizzy Izzys, which was very exciting because Arayot summer is the first summer where you are allowed to spin in circles with a wiffle ball bat! We had a lot of dizzy children, but everyone had a blast and the yachas (sportsmanship) was great!
On Friday we were able to tie the knots of the tzitzits that we tie dyed earlier in the week! We learned about the significance of the knots and tzitzit and when we finally tied the knots the tzitzits looked incredible! This was our Chesed Project for the month and shoutout to Rabbi Richie and Suzy Polirer for their donation that allowed us to bring the Chesed Project to life. Then we had our final ReliSh (energy before Shabbat) of the summer! We sang our hearts out and it was a surreal experience! After that it was Kabbalat Shabbat and straight to Shabbat dinner!
Saturday was a relaxing Shabbat, with a nice Havdalah (ending of Shabbat), accumulating to the beginning of Tisha B’Av (ninth of Av), a day of mourning in the Jewish calendar where we fast and recognize the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash. We had a late wake up on Sunday and had a very low key day. We planted fruit trees in the afternoon to look forward to the future. Break-fast was a momentous occasion after most of the ayda successfully fasted!
Monday was the Hamerutz Haniflah (amazing race). Where we had an all camp relay race between the two Macabiah teams! It is leading up to Lechu Neranena (Final singing and dancing competition) which is tonight! It is the climax of Maccabiah, and we will know which team won by the end of the night!
Yesterday was packing day 🙁 and today is l’hitratot (see you later)! We have had an amazing summer with each and every camper and we cannot wait to see everyone for Leviim 2020!
One last B’ahava (with love),
Amanda and Ethan