Highlights From the Alps

We’re back! It was a challenging yet most rewarding journey. Our residents enjoyed thoroughly the exciting and interesting experiences, planned out by Tamar Wolf of Go & Joy, which got better and better from day to day. It started at takeoff into the skies when one of our residents was looking for Hashem between the fluffy clouds. Of course he found Him there too, because we tangibly felt His presence with us on every step of the way, ironing out creases solving problems and hitches as they came up and all in order to make His special children happy.

It continued the next day when we reached Mont Blanc – the highest mountain in the Alps. There’s nothing like standing on the top of the world, breathing in the fresh pure air of the snowy peaks. The beauty, the purity and the heartfelt singing that burst forth on it’s heels did something to these dear souls and to their mentors who accompanied them working day and night to make sure they made the most of every moment soaking up positive and empowering experiences that will stay with them for a long time to come.

The next day at the amusement park again we experienced powerfully “shaking” experiences, this time man made, such as the breath stopping and hat grabbing roller coaster, not to mention the extreme slide that ended in a massive splash! We discovered that our crowd is mighty brave! And how could we go abroad without shopping at Primark? R. one of our residents exclaimed that his life dream has just come true, after he bought himself a new pair of sunglasses and a watch and was then treated to a bottle of Coke!! How fortunate for us that we were the ones who helped him fulfill his dream!

A trip to the picturesque village of Annecy had such a calming effect on the group that we managed to miss our booked boat ride on the cleanest lake in the Alps. But with special help from above and with Judith’s intervention they agreed to let us on the next ferry and we all enjoyed the calm and pleasant ride. Later that night after supper, a short rest, and major organization, we left for the airport. Tired but happy, with diaries chock full of memories which will be savored and reminisced for months ahead, and will serve as a beacon of light through the dark nights when the residents will find themselves deep in their challenge filled lives.

The smooth landing at Ben Gurion airport was further softened by a balloon and poster filled welcome in the arrivals hall by Ohel Sarah’s director Mrs. Malka Weinberg, accompanied by staff members and mentors who came to collect the tired yet satisfied residents who were thrilled to once again hear their familiar language and were keenly anticipating resting their weary bones on their comfortable pillows in their own room in the warm welcoming group home at Ohel Sarah.