Gali the Sheep here-- reporting for duty for the last time this summer! And what a summer it's been. Looking back on it, we've covered a LOT of ground, and feel so lucky to have this blog as a story archive for our time together over the past seven weeks. Additionally, we just shared a photo album on facebook with the pictures we used for each of our blog posts throughout this summer.
The last day of machaneh (camp) takes on a funny tone... we find ourselves trying to savor every last moment of machaneh magic while packing up our tzrifim (cabins) and loading up our duffles.
For example, today we wrapped up lunch with a raucous shira (singing) session... like so insanely raucous that the toranut (kitchen duty) crew finished cleaning before lunch was over because we sang for such a long time. But then after lunch we sent everyone to do a closing peulat shicvah (age group program) wrapping up the session and looking toward the year ahead.
(Speaking of the year ahead... did you know that we actually run Galil programming all year long in Philly and New York? Save the date for Fall Seminar happening at machaneh from October 11-13th!)
The last night of machaneh has a few key components for our final summer sendoff:
1. Last Wills
Before leaving machaneh, each person receives a list of "items" left to them from the Last Will and Testament of Summer 2019. The list, created by each shicvah's madrichimot (age group's counselors), is tailored to each recipient, and well sprinkled with the jokes from their shicvah (age group) that summer. For example, if I were to receive a last will this summer it would go something like this:
To Gali the Sheep we leave...
- Another awesomely bad Sheep Joke
- The blog posts from first and second session Madatz Revo (Counselor in Training revolution day)
- Real sheep training camp, with Marshmallow & Graham Cracker (the real sheep who actually live at machaneh)
- Galil 2020, another summer at Machaneh and ALL OUR LOVE!
2. Final Mesiba (party)
Tonight we celebrate the summer in the silliest of ways. We close each session with a Final Mesiba, with its own unique theme and activities. And tonight's mesiba is... a Bat Mitzvah party! We will gather in the refet (barn) in our bat mitzvah best, and have a HUGE dance party. From there we put on our bathing suits and have a final pool party!
Part of the fun of final mesiba are the shenanigans that ensue throughout the night. Some come from our chanichimot (campers), and some from our madrichimot as well. It might include late-night cake making, a 6AM shaving cream fight, or a scavenger hunt...and there may or not be a midnight game of Zap being played. We expect a healthy amount of fun, and non-destructive trouble to go down before the morning.
Our hearts feel heavy knowing the goodbyes that await us tomorrow afternoon. We feel so incredibly grateful for the world we've been able to build together over this summer. We also know that our chanichimot will each leave with a piece of Galil 2019 forever ingrained in their minds and hearts. They each leave a little older, a little more resilient, a little more independent. They have made friends this summer that they will know for the rest of their lives. They are primed to take on leadership roles in their schools, synagogues, and community groups. They are part of a strong Jewish community that connects its values to its history, as well as its future. They are all a part of building a better world together.
We thank you for sharing your summer with us. We cannot wait for the next one, and the next.
I want to thank Arielle Schwartz, our Rosh Machaneh (Camp Director) for her strength, poise, and leadership this summer. Additional thanks to the rest of our Mazkirut (Summer Leadership Team), Jenna Abrams, Tom Benamram, Erica Kushner, and Mor Kanari for their teamwork and support. Our community is so lucky to have you all steering this ship.
It has been my deep joy and honor to be your storyteller over the past 7 weeks. I hope this blog has been a small window that conveyed the power of the Galil universe.
We look forward to seeing you throughout the year, both in your home communities, and on the internet as well. And hey... Registration for Camp Galil 2020 is OPEN!
With deep gratitude & enthusiasm,
Gali the Sheep
Ps. How does a sheep say goodbye? See ewe later--I'll wooly miss you!