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Israel Meets Lebanon

Flag Pins for Israel and Lebanon – Best Places In The World To Retire – International Living"Come sit next to me", said Sheyla. I followed her, wondering if it would calm my anxiety. Immediately I knew that we were going to be good friends. Our families were in countries far away, and this tropical land, its language and people was all we had. I was 12, did not speak any Spanish, but I knew this experience would change me forever.

Before arriving to Venezuela, I had studied in Jewish schools, and for the first time I was surrounded by students from all over the world. I felt excited and happy to be their classmate. I was looking forward to making new friends. "I am from Lebanon, where are you from?" My stomach flipped over and the air stopped in my throat. "Oh no, should I tell her where I'm from? What if she stops talking to me?" I gave myself a push and answered:  "I'm from Israel". I expected her to walk away and leave me all alone, instead she said "Cool" and from that moment, our friendship began. Having friends from different religions at such a young age has made me be the kind of person who is open and curious to learn more. Friends have opened an opportunity in my life and I have made very good friends during my travels.

Do you like to travel? Are you excited about packing suitcases and going in airplanes? Well, the adrenalin rush that you get when the plane takes off is still exciting, but sitting in a plane for hours is no longer my favorite part of traveling. So what do you do when you are crammed like a sardine in a can? Do you feel the need to stand and walk around the plane, or going to the bathroom when you don't even need? Yes! That is exactly how I feel, it also happens to me. I like traveling to different places but I don't enjoy the flights. Once you get to your destination, how quick we forget the journey. The colors, the food, the smell of new, the music, it all makes it worthwhile. I always get the feeling that I would like to get to know the country in one day; I don't want to sleep! My favorite part is getting to know the people, to ask them questions about their country and culture. I asked Carolina "What is the weather like? What are the people like? I had so many questions that I even forgot to ask some of them.

Some people might think that moving each time to a different place is difficult, however, for me it is an opportunity for learning and exploring new things. It is exciting to change atmospheres and to "break the mold" by experiencing countries and cultures that others from Israel have never gone through.  My time in Venezuela gave me the opportunity to get to know Sheyla and may of her traditions. If I had stayed in Israel, I would have never even considered meeting and becoming good friends with someone from Lebanon.

I was able to overlook the stereotypes and it made me realize that all the people are the same and if there are political and government issues between countries, that doesn’t mean we have to judge and disregard them as friends. This realization motivates me to learn about other cultures and to showcase mine.

Now that you know a little bit more about me, give me the opportunity to know more about you!   
Posted in  How I Made New Friends Abroad
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