18 things that will happen to you when you go on Taglit-Birthright

Written by
Jennifer Greenberg

We've all been there. Or we're on our way there. Or we're already annoyed by the huge clueless Taglit bubble that wanders around Tel Aviv aimlessly like lost puppies. Whatever category you fall into, there's no denying it: Birthright season is upon us. To prepare for the great Jewish migration, I've assembled 18 things that will definitely happen to you while on your 10-day Israel group trip. Why 18? Well, 18 means Chai and if your Bar/Bat Mitzvah (checks) taught you anything, it's that 18 is good luck.

1. You will get scammed into a red string bracelet (whether by a religious man at the Kotel, or a haggler at Shuk HaCarmel).



2. Some boy in the group will have their Bar Mitzvah at a Jewish historical site...every boy in the group will put on tefillin at a Jewish historical site.



3. You will eat falafel at least once a day (twice if you're lucky).



4. You will skinny dip under the stars at a Kibbutz pool.

5. You will hookup (and possibly fall in love) with one of the soldiers on your trip...and wonder if this was an undercover plan to bring more olim to Israel.



6. You will grow accustomed to overpriced Israeli wine that makes boxed wine taste like a dream.



7. You will ride a camel, have the time of your life, and beg your madrich(a) to take it home with you as a pet.



8. You will lose a member of the group at the market, only to find them asleep on the tour bus.



9. You will face death in the form of a hungover sunrise Masada hike.



10. You will make just enough Israeli friends to stay at a different home (in a different part of Israel) for each high holiday.



11. You will get 30 minutes max of Tel Aviv beach time. You will value every one of those minutes like it was your last.



12. You will spend the night in a Bedouin tent reminiscing about your summers at Jew camp.



13. You will try to explain to the Jordan River guides that "kayaking" and "river tubing" are very different sports.



14. You will realize that the only Sunday school Hebrew that comes in handy here is "Eifo ha'sherutim?"



15. You will learn to carry a roll of toilet paper around with you at all times.



16. You'll need time to comprehend that most of the 'seas' here are actually lakes.



17. You'll search frantically online for last-minute ways to extend your flight.



18. Your group will fall in love with Israel (though Israel might not fall in love with your group) and you'll never want to leave.


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