Last week we had a fantastically wonderful vacation in Zippori. Zippori is a National Park that is filled with archeological finds, amazing mosaics and a rich history of our people. Next door, Moshav Zippori is filled with delightful cabins, a goat farm where they produce and sell goat cheese and goat milk,
an exotic bird store, horseback riding and much more. We stayed in a beautiful cabin for three nights in Zippori Village enjoying the unique fresh water pool there, the trampoline, the tether ball and the playground. A slice of heaven.
We toured around, visiting the archaeological finds at Zippori, the honey and silk farm
and marzipan museum in Kfar Tavor,
the detention center and the dark history of the British Mandate at Atlit, the sea, and the water tunnels at Park Alona that were part of the water tunnel system that ran to Ceasarea. It was all fantastic and an amazing opportunity to show our children more beautiful aspects of our country. We were able to introduce them to honey making techniques, to Jewish life thousands of years ago, to the British Mandate and its consequences for Jews after the Holocaust, natural beauty of our land and more.
But the best part of the trip? The best part of the trip for me occurred in that fresh water pool. My kids don’t have the opportunity to swim often and we were able to enjoy one hour a day in the pool by ourselves. It was a delight, and the older boys loved swinging from the rope swing they had set up over the pool. Zeli put on an inner tube and simply hung out in the water.
And then there was Yakir. Yakir hasn’t been in the water yet this season and we weren’t sure what he would do. But we were sure, knowing his personality, that it would be crazy and unexpected. And it was. We put floaties on him and he simply took off. None of our kids have ever trusted floaties. They have them on their arms and then they still cling to us and hold on to the side of the pool until we give them swim lessons and get them going.
But not Yakir. The first day he was jumping in, dunking his head under the water, and coming up to do it again. By the second day, he had figured out how to get in and out of the water on his own and he was swimming the entire length of the pool. And this was when my favorite moment occurred.
While swimming along with nothing but his cute little head peeking out over the water he started clapping and saying something. I couldn’t figure out what it was at first, and then I realized that he was yelling, “Kol Hakavod to Yakiroosh!” He was congratulating himself, yelling, “Way to go Yakir! Way to go Yakir!” as he swam the length of the pool.
Aside from the fact that it was simply adorable, Yakir’s actions really hit a chord with me. How amazing would it be if we all exclaimed, “Way to go Romi!” or “You’re Awesome Josh!” to ourselves when we did something great. We certainly beat ourselves up enough when we fail or make a mistake, but do we also serve as our own cheerleaders? Do we pat ourselves on the back when we are proud of ourselves and acknowledge the achievement? What a wonderful sense of self confidence little people have. If only they could hold onto that quality as they age, allowing us to focus on the positive things that we do and the milestones that we reach.
Kol Hakavod to Yakiroosh for embracing the pool and for teaching the rest of us a lesson. And Kol Hakavod to the Sussmans for trying a new vacation spot and exposing the kids to more of the wealth of experience that Eretz Yisrael has to offer.
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