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July 6th 2007
Published: August 9th 2007
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Stav, my friend from Birthright.
July 6th-7th, 2007,

This was a great weekend. Stav, my friend from Birthright (a free trip/tour of Israel for all those not in-the-know), took me to the Northern part of Israel for a weekend of camping and hiking. I was the American guest of her, her boyfriend, and her friends Dan and Dana. Some other people met us later at night, after our hike. Everyone was really nice, and we all had a good time.

We started with a hike in Nachalat Zaki/Zaki River. I wish I could have taken pictures, but for the better part of the hike the water was thigh high. For other parts we had to swim. It was awesome.

From there we went to a nearby river where we busted out the shampoo and soap and cleaned ourselves up. After that we got something to eat and changed for the night.

At night we went to something called “Bira VeNashira,” which means “Beer and Sing” but sounds much better in Hebrew. It’s basically a party that’s held every so often at a kibbutz. The party costs 50 NIS to enter and then beer and arak (an Arab liquor, think ouzo) are free

Itai, Stav's boyfriend
for the night. There is a live band that plays Israeli folk music (like their version of Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, etc). For those of you who like Israeli music, it was mostly Meir Ariel, Shalom Chanoch, and Arik Einstein. There is a big screen or two with the lyrics and most people sing along as they get drunk. Did I mention it was all outdoors? It was really fun, but we were so tired from the hike we couldn’t really appreciate it. Those who met us later, though, had a blast.

After that we went back to Calypso, our camp grounds, which was about 4 min walk away within the city of Tiberius. There we hung out for a little while until we all passed out. The next morning we made some breakfast (these guys all had serious camper gear) and then the people who met up with us left.

The four of us then went off to a water source that Stav heard about from one of her friends. It was close by, but not close enough to walk. After wandering around a mountainside for a little, we found some locals who gave us directions. We
Stav and ItaiStav and ItaiStav and Itai

At the camp grounds. What a cute couple, huh?
came across what appeared to be a little tunnel in the ground. It was actually an entrance to an underground cave that was filled with water. It was freezing and it was amazing. Just take a look at the pictures.

After that we were all exhausted so we headed home. All in all it was a fun weekend and one that I hoped to repeat.

Marcus Velelis

Additional photos below
Photos: 20, Displayed: 20


Dan and I Dan and I
Dan and I

We all chilled out and bathed in the river...with our clothes on, you sicko! Sheesh, you've got a dirty mind
Fixin a hole where the rain comes in...Fixin a hole where the rain comes in...
Fixin a hole where the rain comes in...

This is actually the entrance to a water source where we hung out to escape the heat
and keeps my mind from wandering...and keeps my mind from wandering...
and keeps my mind from wandering...

This is the view from the inside
The CaveThe Cave
The Cave

This is the water source from the inside. Here's a view going to its back. You can't see it here, but there's a baby bat hanging from the ceiling
The Cave 2The Cave 2
The Cave 2

The light puring in from outside
Northern IsraelNorthern Israel
Northern Israel

View from atop a mountain

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