Wait…How Long Until Year Course?

by Ra’anan Gurewitsch, Young Judaea Year Course in Israel Participant

I woke up like any other unemployed teenager on August 1st; at three in the afternoon, to a Facebook notification and a text message, both reading, “ONE MONTH TILL YEAR COURSE!”

As I put the phone down and began to fall back asleep, I shot up out of bed in shock and excitement. “Wait… How long till year course?” I thought to myself, “there’s no way it’s only a month!” I couldn’t believe it, but it was true. That far-off thing I signed up for that seemed so– well– far off, was only a month away. I was now beginning that stage that I dreaded for so long. That month when I’d have to somehow do everything from packing to shopping to saying my farewells AND not go completely insane.

Now, there are three days until Year Course and it seems like ever yday I have been getting more and more excited to move all the way out to Israel, become more independent, and make lasting and unforgettable friendships. The anticipation for this experience has made this month of preparation significantly less stressful. A combination of spending the previous month at Camp Tel Yehudah, where every senior staff member would insist I was about to have the best year of my life, and joining the Facebook page for Section 2 Tochnit Yama have made this summer extraordinarily exciting.

As Year Course quickly approaches, I have set my focus on physical and mental preparation. I’ve consulted the packing list, friends, and family for tips on packing smart and light. I’ve got everything from a camelback to power converters to an international student ID packed up and ready to go. All I need now is for these next few days to fly by.

I hope the transition from living with my parents in the United States to living independently in Israel will be a smooth one and I am confident that my madrichim, whom I am very excited to meet, will do everything they can to help. Ultimately, I cannot wait to move into my apartment in Bat Yam to kick off the best year of my life. Until then, I’ll be at home itching in anticipation.