We spent our last weekend of our trip in the Negev, and it was clear that we definitely saved the best for last. Our weekend began with a stop in Be’er Sheva where we visited Ben Gurion University to hear a talk about the history of the school and sustainability. At the school, I heard for the first time the famous words of the former Prime Minister David Ben Gurion. He said the way for Israel to succeed is to make the desert bloom. At first, I didn’t fully conceptualize his words, but after we left the university and drove to visit The Salad Trail, I started to really understand.
Guest Blogger: Emily is a sophomore Wash U
The Salad Trail was an amazing place. We were truly in the middle of the desert, yet there were hundreds of thousands of fruits, vegetables, herbs and other plants growing. We had the opportunity to walk through the gardens and pick and eat the fruit. It was definitely the best farm fresh food I had ever tasted. I was in awe by the fact that less than 50 years ago there was nothing in the spot we were, and now there was a huge farm where over 200,000 people from all over the world visited each year. I saw first hand, Israelis’ ability to take nothing and turn it into something wonderful.
Another highlight of this weekend was visiting Masada and the Dead Sea. While the Dead Sea was an amazing experience, Masada was something I had never heard about before I came to Israel. I had no expectations as I was taking the cable car up to the top of the plateau, and when I reached the top I was stunned. I had never seen anything like it. The beautiful ruins, the advanced technology for the time, the fact that they even had a swimming pool, everything was so cool about the place. I thought it couldn’t get any better until our tour guide started to tell us the stories and history behind the giant rock.
I have never been very into learning about history until my visit to Israel. There is something fascinating about learning history in the place that it actually happened. This trip has been so much more than I ever expected and I never thought I would get this much learning, experience and excitement out of one visit to Israel.