Last week our school had the amazing chance to go on a two-day trip that included visiting Jerusalem, hiking in the desert, seeing the Dead Sea and spending the night in a Bedouin village. Since this was a surprise short break in the middle of a tiring and stressful term, students’ enthusiasm became the fuel maintaining the positive atmosphere throughout the journey.
As one can expect after seeing our itinerary, the trip gathered numerous experiences related to spirituality, history, nature and cultures. There were people who felt overwhelmed by this amalgam of complex ideas being gently, but in a short period of time, thrown towards them reflectivity like arrows, always getting the centre. There were also people who felt the joy as a time capsule, filled with the happiness of spending precious moments together as a group, while travelling around Israel in a bus that took and made us part of a timeless and space-ignoring story.
If I were to reflect on the trip from my personal perspective, I would say it helped us better understand the place we are living in. From the significance of different religions in Jerusalem to being hosted by Bedouins and learning about their lifestyle. A lifestyle where having 23 children isn’t extraordinary and the coffee ritual decides if the guest stays or leaves, this was definitely the most pleasant combination of education and fun. The proof stands in the students’ impressions and in the thousands of great pictures that were taken from the moment preparations started the night before to the morning after the trip when everyone was more or less exhausted.
These lines should loyally depict the great time EMIS had on the trip, but as it usually happens, when something gets that close to your heart, words may become useless. For me, remembering this trip will always bring in front of my mind’s eyes one superb image, before any word – the perfect desert night sky painted with stars. As I saw it through the roof of the Bedouins’ tent, in a place where the monotone colour of the desert seems to have changed in the colour of beauty and when you know the holy smell of incense from a sacred land will follow you forever.
Written by: Raluca Ciubotariu
Edited by: Hannah Cook
Copy edited by: Eng Sou Ea