Thursday, July 14, 2011

Highlights from Ryan Berg and Noah Sakin

So far, the Diller Teen Fellows have been living it up here in Israel. While being in good company, we have traveled to the Golan Heights, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and many others. The young adults in the group have been using their Hebrew skills in order to immerse themselves into the Israeli culture, and we have made many friends. The view of Jerusalem today was a highlight of the trip and rafting and biking were some others. The Schwarma is amazing as usual, as many of the young teens, including myself, have searched hard for it as though it were Chipotle. We have taken the food very seriously. Bus rides have been filled by singing, the occasional dance, and Justin Hayet’s crazy performances. Israel is amazing and the teens are having the time of their lives.

- Ryan Berg

While exploring Israel, one of the highlights for a lot of the Diller Teens was the flea market in Jaffa. This allowed all of us to experience a small part of Israel that many other people may not get to experience while they’re here. While a lot of the vendors spoke English, we struggled while trying to negotiate prices with them. This market wasn’t like anything I have ever seen in the U.S. While walking down the alleys, the vendors aggressively convinced us to visit their shops. Once inside, it was impossible to see half of the stuff that they had to sell because they would hide it behind the walls and bringing it out for their favorite “Jewish student customers.” If we hadn’t run away from the store by this point in time, we would be offered some ridiculous price by the vendor. Eventually, with a lot of effort, the price would be lowered to something almost reasonable and we’d buy the item. Then they’d try and keep us in their stores as long as possible and sell us more of their “one of a kind” Roman coins or “hand made silver jewelry.” Once we finally convinced them that we were good, we’d walk down the alley another six feet and repeat this all over again.

-Noah Sakin

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