Saturday, July 5, 2014

Challenge by Choice

The thing about the memories  you cherish the most, are that they usually occur from  moments of pure spontaneity.  Today as  I was sitting in my air conditioned room in Mitzpeh Ramon reading quietly, a few of the boys knocked on my door and asked if anyone wanted to join them for a hike. My instinctive answer would have been to say no, for I was comfortable and content with just sitting there, though I realized that I am in the middle of a dessert in a country across the world from my home and this opportunity would not present itself to me again. I put on my well worn in Birkenstocks and grabbed my sunglasses and with that, we were off. As we passed the eating hall to get to the gate leading us out of the camp, a few of our group members kindly let us know that leaving the camp was against the rules and then excitedly joined us.

We walked out into large mountains of stones and set our sights on the one we wanted to tackle.  Climbing up I focused on each step, for fear that if I put my foot in the wrong place I would lose footing and fall. Finally I reached the top and was overwhelmed by the beautiful view and how seemingly small everything that once looked big was. I ventured my way to the edge of the giant rock mountain and took a moment to feel the wind in my hair and whistling in my ear, and to appreciate where I was. Sadly my moment was cut short by Johnny asking me how many Shekels I would pay him to run down the mountain. While an amusing thought, I was not amused and shook my head telling him that if he ran down he would run through the Jordanian border and be shot by snipers. Despite this interruption,  I was able to fully absorb the moment, its simplicity, and its overwhelming beauty. 
Today I realized  for the one hundredth time in my life to take every opportunity presented to you. It is too easy to say no, but when you are able to say yes is when, you will be guaranteed memories of a life time.

---Sarah Eylon

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