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February 20th 2006
Published: February 20th 2006
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Sarah and me at the playground
Kibbutz Lotan is a very special place, and over the past month it became an important part of me. Throughout the month, as a group we spent most of our mornings working on our project--an "Insect Safari." We built a large wall with date palm branches, mud, and hay that eventually will be the perimeter to some sort of learning exhibit about insects. In the afternoons we learned about ecology, global awareness, Progressive Judaism, and all sorts of other things. The sessions were engaging and inspiring. We spent the rest of our time reading, writing, thinking, relaxing, playing outside with Kibbutz kids, and visiting with Kibbutz members. The community on Lotan was warm and loving, and welcomed us with open arms. We also traveled around the area quite a bit, with one of the Kibbutz members as our guide. The region's beauty is unimagineable. It was hard leaving Kibbutz Lotan--for me it became another home. I was able to leave in peace though, knowing that I'll be back time and time again.
I'm back in Haifa now and the second semester is beginning. We had our Hebrew placement test this morning and luckily, the results show that I did learn something
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One of our odd projects...decorating the Kibbutz entrance with rocks.
last semester. I'm looking forward to another few months of trying to absorb as much Hebrew as I can. We're in the middle of course registration, so I'm still not sure what I will be taking this semester, but the preliminary list is looking as follows: Hebrew 6, Modern Standard Arabic II, Intro to Rabbinic Literature II, and Literature of the Holocaust. I'm also planning on signing up for a course taught through the regular university as opposed to the overseas department in order to challenge my Hebrew even further.
Luckily, being in the desert I missed the coldest time of year up here in Haifa. Now that I'm back, the days are getting longer again and the weather's getting more and more beautiful by the day. Soon, spring will arrive!


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One of our odd projects...decorating the Kibbutz entrance with rocks.
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Kibbutz Lotan

One of our odd projects...decorating the Kibbutz entrance with rocks.
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Kibbutz Lotan

The beginnings of an "Insect Safari," which was our main project during the month.
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In the organic garden.
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In the organic garden.
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In the organic garden.
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In the organic garden.
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The outdoor compost museum.
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A compost toilet.
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A Lotan slogan!
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A solar-powered oven.
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A lovely hut. Perfect for tea.
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My wonderful host family (plus Herschel and minus Adam)
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My wonderful host family: grandmother and the two younger children.
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My wonderful host family: me and Eden
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Herschel, Adam (one of my host brothers), and me
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At the pub.


21st February 2006

memories
Fun to see this, reminds me of my summer on Kibbutz Usha in 1976. My daughter is your age now and went to Israel with Birth Right. Enjoyed your posts.
24th March 2006

Very cool!
I was just skimming around some blogs and happened upon this one by absolute accident. I'm delighted that I did! My daughter, Shira, has been designing the Insect Safari as a student at Kibbutz Ketura (the Arava Institute). She told me that while she was on semester break others would be building the site. And look! It was you! I LOVED seeing the photos ... I was having a hard time visualize it. Thanks so much for posting such a newsy blog, with lots of wonderful pictures.

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