What does it mean to experience Israel with Holy Blossom
By: Pam Albert
I want to share my perspective on what it means to tour and experience Israel at this point in time with our Holy Blossom community. Be it via our zoom interactive webinars or on the ground in Israel this coming fall.
When we thought of what that could look like, we thought of connecting with the land and the people. We thought of walking away with new, unique and creative ways of being in Israel. If it is through joining us for our Virtual Israel Tour, we wanted you to feel like you were there, following our guide Ishai from Fig Trips as he takes us to off the beaten track places so you can actually imagine what life was like through different generations, with people from different countries and different walks of life who brought alive, our Israel. We wanted you to feel like you could taste and smell the flavours and scenes as if you were walking with Ishai as our explorations of Israel became alive. The feedback from the 60 participants who attended our last Virtual Israel tour was just that. In addition, after attending our Virtual Israel Tour past President Judy Winberg shared the following,
I love to travel and I love Israel. And while the Corona virus imposed restrictions I was able to pursue both of these interests as a participant on a virtual visit for five days in 2020. Ishai, our tour guide, live in realtime on ZOOM and pre-recorded video in Israel led our group of …?… through a week of thoughtful, stimulating and unique tours. Like so many of the professional tour guides in Israel Ishai was knowledgeable, engaging and day by day we came to know and appreciate his love for the country.
There are many in the congregation who’ve told me that they’d love to travel to Israel but have never been able to make the trip. This is the perfect first trip to Israel! No packing, no flights, no hotels, no special clothing, no tour buses and your family won’t even notice you’re gone other than for two hours a day for a week. What could be better?
And since you asked for more, we are creating new journeys that walk beside Ishai in Israel. Our next experience, accompanied with wine and treats from Israel begins Monday, February 8th. To register by our extended cut-off date click this link.
And if this has enticed you to join us on the ground in Israel, we are optimistic that we can meet in Jaffa on Sunday, October 24. After reading the book, “City of Oranges” by Adam Lebor, I had numerous questions about the roots of and the routes to the land of Israel, where for centuries travellers passed through Jaffa, or arrived in the port in Jaffa and settled. This book sparked my curiosity and I wanted to learn more. We will explore Israel together through the lens of Jaffa. I was curious about different immigrant populations and religious groups. Where they settled and where their routes led them after Jaffa. I was curious about how they interacted and lived together. About how their lives were intertwined and how that affected their co-existence, their friendships, their beliefs and even what they ate each day. Imagine for example the spice store that only sold spices local to the area, that kept adding spices for groups of new immigrants that settled in Jaffa from Morocco and Lybia and Ethiopia and other Arab countries and Russia and Germany. All of a sudden this small spice store evolved into an experience where flavours and people emerged from all walks of life. We will explore Israel through the lenses of Jaffa, including socio-economically, culturally, co-existence, poverty, religion, culinary, the start-up scene in Jaffa, and much more. Would you like to join us? Stay tuned for more information once we feel really optimistic about the possibility of travel in October.
Please feel free to share your thoughts around what exploring Israel would look like to you, be it via our virtual engagements or on the ground. Contact [email protected]