persephone_rivka's Travel Journals


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10 days in the hospital with traveling companion

  • Currently in Kibbutz Lotan, Israel

Dancing around the Sun

This journal will chronicle pieces of my thoughts and experiences over the next four months at Kibbutz Lotan.

Pre-Jerusalem free-write

Israel Kibbutz Lotan, Israel  |  Nov 15, 2010
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I've been there four times in the past year.  The first time, I was sure that it was the only time i'd ever be there - how monumental it was - in Jerusalem, at the Kotel.  I was overcome with awe, intoxicated with Jerusalem gold and glowing, my steps light as I danced through the old city and to the drums on Ben Yehuda.  Second time in Jerusalem - I was a student typing reports in cafes.  I visited the old city on a hectic tour.  On our way to the Kotel, we learned that a Palestinian was just shot in East Jerusalem for driving through a checkpoint.  Tension in the air, faces long and grave, but by the end of the day we were all laughing over dinner drinks.  I toured with Ir-Amim, I was able to conceptualize and process what "the occupation" meant and looked like for the first time.  First spell of disillusionment.  One month later, and I'm back in the old city.  I slept on the roof of a hostel in the armenian quarter and befriended two swedish girls.  This time, I explored the muslim quarter - got lost in it - and fear for my personal safety got the best of me.  The next day, I conquered that fear by going to Ramallah.  I did not visit the Kotel. I connected with Chani and Moshe.  I ran into an old friend on Agron.  Alone in Jerusalem without a program - I began to feel heavy and overwhelmed, ready to flee to Tel Aviv so I could breathe frothy ocean air.  The last time I was in Jerusalem I did not leave Rehavia.  It was cold and rainy and I was underdressed.  I was with the ultra-relgious.  Was I even in Jerusalem?  I could've been anywhere in the world.  Now, I'm going for what will be my last time this year, and maybe my last time for a long time.  On a program. Old city tour. Ir Amim. Things I've done and things I've seen.  But this time, with new people, new teacher, new perspective.  I'm not sure what to expect, but I do know that I'm most excited to be on the other side. 

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