On Wednesday, Steph and I caught a train to Rosh Ha’ayin to visit her friend Ma’ayan, who was one of the soldiers on Steph’s Birthright trip. Ma’ayan invited us both to stay with her family during Rosh Hashanah, for which I was so grateful. Had I not had the invitation, my program coordinator would have found me a host family, but this was such a nicer option.
We arrived in the afternoon, and had a chill afternoon of chatting and nail painting with Ma’ayan, until her extended family started to arrive for dinner. It was an amazing meal of about 15 people, with so, so much food. One of Ma’ayan’s cousin’s is also vegan, and she brought a lot of delicious food for us. She also gave me some great tips for where to buy vegan food and how to read labels!
Afterwards, Steph, Ma’ayan and I went out to a bar in Ra’anana. It was fun to have a small girls night. When I ordered a spicy margarita, the waitress assured me I should get “the sailor” instead. When I asked what the difference was between the listed sizes, “drink” and “bottle,” she told me I was getting the bottle and left.
This is what she brought.
Well, it was really good, and thankfully we spent a long time just hanging out at the bar SO that I was able to finish it at an enjoyable, slow pace. Yes, you read correctly, I finished it. And there was absolutely no need to order a second drink.
In the morning, we had a family breakfast, with fresh salads and grains. I was in veggie heaven. I seriously need to start getting into this whole Israeli salad-for-breakfast trend on my own.
Then we went to the beach. Steph and I finally played the popular beach paddle game, matkot, with Ma’ayan’s friend Jonathan showing us how. For lunch/early dinner, we walked to their favorite brunch spot on the beach, called Benedict. I had a vegan crepe with chocolate filling that was crazy good.
We went out on Thursday night as well, to a different bar, where we met up with a bunch of Ma’ayan and Jonathan’s friends. Both bar nights were really fun and chill, with a hilarious assortment of American music.
Today (Friday), Ma’ayan and her father drove us back, which was so nice as no public transport was in service. Since getting back, it’s been strange having the apartment practically to myself – Steph’s out to dinner, and both apartments are still elsewhere for the holiday, probably until tomorrow. It really makes me realize how little time I spend alone here. This evening, I’m enjoying the peace and quiet, though I’m glad my days have been so busy!