Giant Ants {Sar-El ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Day #8}

Giant Ants {Sar-El ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Day #8} | Sunday 17th July 2016 |

The whole group met at our original drop-off point at 9am so we could go back to the base. The Australian pranked our madricha saying that he had only just woken up, when he was actually arriving at the meeting point. We were also introduced to a new cohort of volunteers who would be joining us. There are 3 new girls and 5 new boys, from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Germany. I guessed they’d be from Mexico, so I lost the bet I made with the French girls. 

When we returned to the base we were lucky to get a couple of hours to unpack and rest before lunch and work in the afternoon. Our dorm of 4 became 7, which is annoying because even though we get our New Yorker friend with us now, we hardly get any space. I moved beds to the one directly next to the air-con, which is both the best and worst place to be. Plus, there’s no ladder so for about 20 minutes we were all crowding round the bed in hysterics as I tried to clamber onto the top bunk. I was crying and laughing simultaneously from the struggle! I don’t know how I’m going to to this every day! 

On a serious note, we heard that there was an attempted terrorist attack happened on the light rail in Jerusalem, just half an hour after a few of our friends had left the city from that area. Luckily, the police had spotted suspicious behaviour and caught the man about to board the light rail before it was too late. Being here when these things happen makes you realise how important the IDF is and how the soldiers risk their lives everyday for the safety of Israel and its people. Later on, we found out that a grenade had accidentally detonated in the Golan Heights, killing two people. It’s absolutely tragic. 

After a typical army lunch (lots of potatoes!) we went to the same warehouse as last week (we all complained but there’s nothing we can do to change our work). We started off by sorting through the cardboard recycling because so much plastic and other junk had been mixed in there too. Imagine a huge fenced area full to the brim with cardboard boxes. We had to clear the whole area, flatten the boxes, chuck out the rubbish and stack the flat cardboard nearly. It took 2 hours in the baking sun (“sous le caniard”). Then I went inside and helped to sticker label some vehicle seal parts. Luckily, we only worked for 3 hours. The new people worked so hard and barely took any breaks; they also stayed on longer than the rest of us just because they wanted to!

In my free time I only had time to do my laundry. It took 2 hours and more effort than the work from earlier! At least now everything will be a lot cleaner – unless my clothes get infested with ants when they hang up. There are ants everywhere here- in the toilets, in the showers, on the floor… there’s no escaping them! Oh, and some of them are giant jumping ones that look like spiders (urghh)!

So for the activity, we learned the values of the IDF and had to use this knowledge to problem-solve different dilemmas. For example, if there’s a pregnant woman trying to cross the West Bank border into Israel, should you check properly or let her rush to hospital to give birth? Our madricha told us some interesting stories about real events that happened, which she based the dilemmas on. Also, I read one of the dilemmas out loud and the Canadian boy was somewhat mesmerised by my British accent (he now gets me to repeat what I say so he can mock me, which I think is hilarious). 

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