Masa Israel Journey Blog

August 26, 2007
Name: Shana Dorfman
Age: 23 
Hometown: Santa Rosa, California, USA
Program: OTZMA
Date of arrival: 2 months after graduating university)
Hobbies: Writing & running
How did you get to OTZMA?
I was on Birthright in January of that year, 2006, and I was in Haifa with my aunt, and she was an adoptive mother for a participant, and she introduced me to her and she told me about the program, so that's how I found out.
How much family do you have here?
My dad's whole family lives here, they all made Aliyah in the 60s and 70s.  All his cousins and aunts and uncles.
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August 26, 2007
Nothing is better than spending the Chagim in Israel outdoors!  Here is our list of the top 10 hikes during the chagim season.  Before you set out, however, it must be warned that every year many, many people get themselves into trouble while hiking in Israel for lack of proper training or preparation.  To avoid this it is advised to participate in an organized hike with a trained guide before setting out on your own.  The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI) offers great hikes with experienced staff who will be glad to share their knowledge and skill with you. 
A few simple rules should always be followed when hiking:
- Every hiker should have at LEAST 3 liters of bottled water with them per day.
- Always wear a hat.
- Have an official trail map that you know how to read.  These can be purchased in various stores through Israel. map info...
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August 20, 2007
From translation blunders to coffee confusion, Hebrew Union College student Jen Gubitz describes her first two months in Israel and the comical side of foreignness.
After being here for two months, I’ve concluded that my life in Israel is most easily compared to the only coffee beverage I can successfully order.  Café Ha-fuch - translated simply as "Coffee Flipped/Upside Down" - is neither latte nor coffee, nor espresso by its lonesome. What is it? It’s tasty, caffeinated, complicated, indescribable at times, and a drink you will be served, regardless of what you order. Living in a new country can really turn all that you once knew – Upside Down.
While I'm a huge fan of iced coffee - the beverage of choice that I injected into my veins...
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