"After a long day of travel, we’ve finally landed at a youth hostel in Tel Aviv to spend the night. Our journey here was a long one, complete with a fourteen-hour plane ride, bus transportation, and so, so, so much security."
Junior Sam A, editor of the school newspaper, The Oberserver, sends us a report from Tel Aviv.
Wow. After a long day of travel, we’ve finally landed at a youth hostel in Tel Aviv to spend the night. Our journey here was a long one, complete with a fourteen-hour plane ride, some bus transportation, and so, so, so much security.
We started our journey at six in the evening US time on Sunday, March 4, at SFO. Parents, teens, chaperones, and siblings alike congregated in a massive huddle near check-in, most definitely impeding the way of innocent passersby.
Needless to say, tears were shed, hugs were given, and smiles broke across most of our class’ faces — we were bound for Israel, without our parents! After a grounding send-off with Mr. Wolgel, we said our final goodbyes.
There were not one, not two, but three rounds of security and bag checks (and some of us, even more) as we made it to Gate 93: home sweet home for about an hour. Some of us went to purchase ridiculously expensive juice, while others lounged in cuddle-puddles. We were all anxious for the long journey ahead of us.
As we entered the plane right foot first, we looked at one another; excited, yet ready to face the music and settle in with snacks, movies, and sleeptime podcasts. We thought, if we can get through junior year, we can definitely get through this!
1...2...3...TAKEOFF! As our plane soared off the tarmac, and our class finished Snapchatting pictures of its wings set against the austere night sky, we were off.
I sure can’t forget the taste of the homogeneous pasta dish we received for dinner. And I’m sure others remember the screaming children and the ridiculously comfy seats. Along with multiplayer Bingo, extremely long bathroom lines, neck pillows, and snacks galore, by hour four, we were doing just fine.
Pretty soon after dinner, I shelved my AP US History textbook and zoned out for the night (thanks, mom, for the melatonin). The next seven hours were a sleepy blur. When I awoke, there were still three hours left to the flight, and by then most of our class had found some way to sleep. A breakfast consisting of ninety-percent nuts was served, and many card games were played. In no time at all, the pilot announced we had thirty minutes left until landing.
3...2...1...and the plane hit the ground only semi-unsteadily. We had arrived in the land of our people, and oh man, were we tired...and hungry! The latter was sated by both our tour guides and Aviv’s gracious family, who provided some yummy snacks for us.
After a short bus ride, we arrived at the hostel, tired, full, and ready to sleep. As I’m typing this, everyone’s dozing off, and I can say with certainty that the Class of 2019 is ready for another two weeks in this sacred, special place.