Week Three Updates – Maalot!

Hello dear friends,

What a busy week this was for our favorite group of 15-year-old children! First I’ll start with our most patriotic day: July 4th! (Fun fact: Congress actually voted to declare independence on July 2nd, not July 4th). We paraded around camp, ate red, white, and blue cupcakes, and America’ed it up all day long! At night, we ate a festive dinner followed by some late night fireworks. Because our chanichim (campers) go to bed later than a lot of other campers, we even gave them the chance to have a very American dance party in the Beit Am. It was USAweome.

Shabbat was as it always is: a magical, spiritual experience on the shores of Lucas Pond. While the entire week was extremely hot and humid, a little rain on Friday morning finally broke the hot spell–shabbat was absolutely beautiful weather. We had our second Tisch (slow singing in a cramped dark room) together on Friday night. Our chanichim walked back to their tzrifiim (bunks) under a clear and beautiful night sky full of star. Shabbat day was idyllic as usual.

Our Shabbat sicha (discussion) speaker was Danny Danon, the Israeli Ambassador to the UN and a Yavneh parent! He spoke to us about how the UN works and how Israel fits into it. There was a range of reactions and responses from a number of our chanichim –  it was great to see my chanichim engaging with and feeling passionate about these sorts of political issues, it means that they were listening and that they care. As I told them afterward, the sicha is meant to be a discussion, not just a lecture.

We spent a lot of Sunday and Monday in play rehearsal and Zimriyah (camp-wide singing competition) practice. Both events are coming up soon, with Zimriyah literally tomorrow (!!!). Don’t worry they sound great. The play rehearsals were a little bit rougher, but we still have another week to prepare for that.

Last night, we went to Hampshire Hills athletic club. Did we sleep? No we did not sleep. But we did swim, play basketball, eat snacks, and play Kadoor Tachat (a made-up Yavneh game played on a tennis court). Our chanichim had an amazing time and are currently sleeping through the morning as I write this. We even got an email from the manager saying that we were one of the best behaved groups they had ever had. Yay us!

That’s all for now folks! Check back for next week for more updates on Zimriyah, the play, and Shabbat. Til next time!

B’ahavah,

Ravi

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