Day 20: Lehava, Israel - Jenna Karpas and Ash Corrick

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After a few days of being able to stay up until all hours and sleep in as long as we wanted, without being woken with a blaring wakeup call, today was the day our free weekend ended. We were all recharged and excited for the second half of our IST journey that was about to begin!

We (Jenna and Ash) both came from Ranana and reunited with our side in Cinema City, who we missed very much. We had free time to get lunch, relax and catch up on all we had missed out on.

After this, we got on a bus and drove back to our much loved hotel in Ramat Rachel, where we went straight to hear a speaker who was entertaining and taught us how to debate with people about Jewish advocacy. Even though we've been in our bubble of Moriah and the Eastern suburbs, we know there are people out there who want to unfairly attack Israel, and we know we have a responsibility to be able to sensibly give both sides of the story.

Following the talk, we went to a few stops where we were able to see the security barrier of the West Bank, close up. This is something IST has never done before and we know it is unique to have such exposure to the conflict, so we can really understand what's going on within Israel and it’s surroundings.

A delicious dinner was had by all, and then we had a fun karaoke night where everyone was invited to come up on stage and perform a song of choice, either by themselves or in a group. It  was really enjoyable to see everyone, even people we wouldn’t expect to come out of their comfort zone and surprise the audience with their talent.

Our side has become a tight-knit family; we love experiencing everything we do together! We have all made new friendships that will last a lifetime. We are so excited for the next 3 weeks we are about to spend together, but sad at the same time that it is soon drawing to a close. We send our love to all our families back in Sydney and hope they are not missing us too much!

Day 21: Netzach, Israel - Anila Bonfil

Day 20: Netzach, Israel - Ella Rogut