Salutations, Galil Friends and Family!
After weeks of planning and anticipation, the Bonimot (campers entering 9th grade) got to run their Aliyah Bet simulation last night. This after-hours activity is a tradition at Galil, where the chanichimot (campers) are woken up during the night, given “passports,” and then led through the woods as they face countless stops for interrogations. We do Aliyah Bet to teach the chanichimot about the illegal immigrants made by Jews on their way to Israel throughout history. Each year, the Aliyah Bet focuses on a specific journey, and this year focused on the escapes made by Moroccan Jews. The chanichimot were woken up in shifts, brought to the basketball court for “boot camp” where they were given their new identities for the night, and then, in groups, they were led into the woods on a trail flagged by the Bonimot. On the trail, there were tzevet (staff) members and Madatz (counselors in training) dressed in dark clothing and wearing scary makeup, waiting to add to the spook of the night, as instructed by the Bonimot. Following the journey through the trail, the chanichimot were treated in “Israel” with cookie brownies and Israeli style chocolate milk (in a bag!). After countless hours of hard work and organizing, the Bonimot had their time to shine, and the night was a success! The whole machaneh (camp) enjoyed the night, and to make up for lost sleep, we slept in extra late today.
When we woke up this morning, we were on a regular schedule. We delighted in a breakfast of waffles and tater tots, and from there, our morning was on! For peula shikvah alef (first age group activity), the Amelimot (campers entering 4th and 5th grade) and the Chotrimot (campers entering 6th grade) practiced freestyle and backstroke at instructional swim. Once they were done their lesson, they had some free swim! The Sayarimot (campers entering 7th grade) had a discussion about disabilities and equality. They began with a mini simulation, where every chanichol had some sort of difficulty with their arms, feet, or sight. The Sayarimot were able to have a greater understanding of what living with a disability is like. The Tzophimot (campers entering 8th grade) had an activity all about kvutzah (age group) identity and the friendships between each other. The activity was very relaxed, but informative and insightful nonetheless. The Bonimot celebrated Yom Bonimot (a day dedicated to themselves), as they rested and did fun activities after their long night of Aliyah Bet. Also zonked from last night, the Bogrimot (campers entering 10th grade) had a block of free time to relax after helping the Bonimot run their activity last night. All in all, a pretty busy day!
For lunch, we had baked ziti, cauliflower, and a side of garlic bread. When we were done eating, we stood on the benches and did some classic camp cheers that we have not been able to do in recent days because of our busy schedule. Tonight we have a very special tochnit erev (nighttime activity) planned. We will be holding a Kangaroo Court, where chanichimot will try their madrichimot (counselors) for injustices they have suffered. Some famous headlines throughout the years have been “Madrichol Found Guilty for Sending Chanichol to Sports” and “Gross Injustice: Chanichimot NOT Allowed in Madrichimot Moadon; Blasphemy!” There is no doubt that tonight will be one for the books. We can’t wait to see what verdicts the judges throw at machaneh this evening!