Arriving in Israel!

Shalom from Israel! All 4 of our team members have arrived in Israel safely, and we are ready for our adventures ahead! Over the next few weeks, we hope to share our experiences teaching high school students in Nazareth, Israel.

The first few days in Israel, we stayed in Tel Aviv and just spent some time relaxing and exploring the city. When we were first dropped off at our lodging for Tel Aviv, we realized we didn’t really know which room in the apartment we were staying in, and none of us had cellular data at the moment. After debating what to do for about a minute, a lady walked out of the apartment. Here we encountered our first act of kindness from the locals. She saw 3 of us looking lost, and she knew we were there for Airbnb. She offered to call our Airbnb host for us, and within a couple minutes we were able to get into the apartment.

After settling in, the first thing we did was to go find SIM cards. Fortunately, we found a cell phone store near our lodging, and we were glad we waited since it was much cheaper than those at the airport. We encountered our second act of kindness from the locals when the store owner didn’t have a twenty-shekel banknote and he was going to give us 20 one-shekel coins, a stranger voluntarily changed the 20 coins with his banknote.

The day of arrival we were really tired, so we wanted to rest early. But…of course we had to eat! Our lodging was at the prime location in Tel Aviv, right next to the Carmel Market, and we stumbled upon a restaurant that offered “The Best Kabob in Tel Aviv!” (with the exclamation). So we tried it:

“The Best Kabob in Tel Aviv!” at Bar Ochel in the Carmel Market, Tel Aviv

The quality of food matched its description in our opinion!

After some resting, we started the day next day by exploring more of the Carmel Market. Being a Friday morning (before Shabbat), it was very lively with both sides of the alley filled with food stands of all sorts. We stopped by a vendor and got some Hummus Sambosk and some cigars (not what you think—they’re the egg-roll looking things in the photo)!

We were lucky to be there when Nachlat Binyamin Arts and Crafts Fair was happening, since it only happens twice a week (Tuesdays and Fridays). The alley was filled with original crafts from local artists ranging from home decors to jewelry.

We then walked around Rothschild Boulevard (White City), which is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Most buildings surrounding the boulevard are white (as suggested by the alternate name, “White City”), and it is lined with kiosks and restaurants. Walking along the Rothschild Boulevard towards the coast, we also got to walk along the beach too! It was nice to get some sunshine after being cold in Boston 🙂

My (Kalyn’s) first time seeing the Mediterranean Sea!

We had dinner at a place close to our lodging called Bezzo Pizza, and the server told us that it would be the best pasta we would have…and it was pretty amazing! Afterwards we went out for a famous dessert in Israel called malabi, which is a milk pudding with rose water and nuts.

Our adventure continues… 🙂

Written by Kalyn Bowen

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