Spring Break in Israel

Spring break kicked off last Thursday for me. And I can’t think of better timing. Last week was filled with a whole lot of midterms and Women’s Week Events so I’m especially glad for the chance to slow down a little and sleep :)

So, amidst all of Mather’s Housing Day craziness, my twin sister and I packed up all our luggage and headed to the airport to board our flight. But first… we decided to make a pit-stop in Rome. It was my first time in Italy and it was absolutely amazing! It was so nice just walking up and down the streets of Rome, eating gelato, and taking in all the sights– the people on the streets, the artisans and their handiwork, the streetside cafés and gelatarias. Roma even in late winter is absolutely delightful. It’s a city with it’s own personality for sure! My twin sister and I only had 12 hours and we wanted to make the most of it so after finding our way around the train station we hit the Colosseum, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain (my favorite!), the Vatican, and the Spanish Steps. It was a lot in a little bit of time but I can’t think of a better way to use a layover. After trekking around Rome for a day, getting my fill of gelato, pizza, expresso, and cannoli we boarded our flight to our real destination: Israel!

So you’re probably thinking– Israel? It’s not exactly the stuff of beach get-aways and normal spring break trips. Most of my friends either headed home or hit the beach. But my whole family was planning a reunion in Israel (my uncle is currently stationed there as part of his post with the UN) and I couldn’t think of a better place to be. Granted, this trip hasn’t really been a vacation. It’s been really educational and incredibly insightful– just thinking about the history of this place and the current international climate it finds itself in blows my mind. The views, the cityscapes, the sites we’ve visited have been amazing. Not to mention, President Obama’s trip just happened to coincide with my visit to Israel so I’ve had more of an opportunity to openly talk with Israelis and Palestinians alike about US-Israel/Palestine relations and just what they think are the prospects for peace in this tumultuous region.

It’s been a really different kind of Spring Break to say the least but one I wouldn’t want to trade for the world. We’ve covered so much in just 7 days– from Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, Dome of the Rock, and Via Dolorosa (the path that Jesus Christ is said to have made to his crucifixtion and eventual resurrection) to the Dead Sea and Bethlehem up to the north of the country and to the coastline in Tel Aviv– and I can feel my brain literally expanding take this part of the world– a part I’ve never really gotten to know– in. Now I’m just bracing myself to leave this world of falafel, mango juice, chicken schwarma and hummus for good ol’ Harvard once more :) Happy weekend!

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1 comment

  1. Jeanie Nguyen’s avatar

    I lovee how gelato got 2 shout outs, well deserved!

    And I’m beyond impressed you hit everything up in Rome in just 12 hours!! I was in Rome for ~24 hours last summer and managed to miss the Trevi Fountain – one of my biggest regrets everrrr; so jealous!

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