by Emily Kazor
When I first met my host family, I already knew that the few days I would spend with them would be an experience I would never forget. Spending time with my host family was the most impactful part of the trip for me. I was able to experience much more than I would be able to in the U.S. With my family, we first visited the dad’s side of the family who lived in the mountains and had a huge buffet of fresh and authentic Israeli food, some of which I have never heard of before, but tasted amazing. Then we spent some time outside and collected eggs from over 5,000 of the chickens they had that were a part of their farm. Next we went to the mom’s side of the family, who lived in a kibutz in
Nahariya. We also had many different kinds of Israeli foods for dinner, much better than food in the U.S. My host family’s cousins came over and all of us kids went and hung out and talked about each other’s lives in Israel and in the U.S. We all learned so much about each other and had such a great time with their cousins.
The next day, we went to an outdoor mall and I bought some cool little things to bring back home with me. After the mall, we went to a shuk. It was extremely packed with people and it was so hard to get around. I had really good falafel there, too. Being able to go to the shuk and see all of the cool items for sale was very eye-opening. During the long drives to get to the mall and the shuk, the scenery all around us was breathtaking. The next day when I had to go back with my group, it was very hard for me to say goodbye to my host family. In the very short time I spent with them, we had built such a strong relationship. Instead of my host family, they became my second family. Being able to experience such cool things with them was definitely the most impactful part of the trip.