Here is a brief rundown of last weekend:
I went with my friend Josh to Jerusalem on Thursday night.
We stopped for shwarma and then went to Mahane Yehuda, the shuk in Jerusalem. I hadn't been there and wanted to make sure I saw what it was like, even if that view was limited at 9:30 p.m. It was still fairly busy, but a lot was closed - not nearly the craziness of Fridays before Shabbat.
We stood in the Old City at The Heritage House and went to the Kotel, Western Wall, on Thursday night and again on Friday morning.
On Friday, after the Kotel, we joined a group of students from Hebrew University, the Conservative Yeshiva, and Nativ (Conservative post-high school year long program in Israel) at Hebrew University.
We went to the Druze village Daliat al-Carmel to the shuk. They have a lot of really cool stuff in their stores, including "unbreakable glass" that is handmade and handpainted. In one store, we had a conversation with a really nice Druze guy in a back room. He told us about the Druze flad (for the people, not a country) and the similarities between the Druze and the Jews. He spoke in Hebrew and I didn't understand most of it, but it was a lot of fun.
Afterwards, we drove to Kibbutz Hanaton, near Haifa. Kibbutz Hanaton is the only Conservative/Masorti Kibbutz in Israel. It is small, but they are rejuvinating it as the kibbutz undergoes privatization. While on the Kibbutz, we learned about their plans for the future.
Over Shabbat, we had good services and good food. I met some interesting new people. We studied the weekly Torah portion and a brief development of the Oral Torah. It was all very good.
Our stay was nice and I enjoyed the Shabbaton.
I was going to be in Jerusalem for this coming Shabbat, but those plans fell through. I could probably pursue a number of other options, but will likely stay in Be'er Sheva and take it easy and try to do some sightseeing around here.