I have had the pleasure of arranging two group trips with Keshet, one trip was to Israel, and the other was to Spain, both trips with were of Jewish women. It has been a really fabulous experience working with Keshet. Keshet takes care of everything from the " nuts and bolts" of the trip, to all educational programming, and have always been very easy and flexible to work with when it comes to adding special flourishes, and tailoring the trip to the particular needs of the group. The reason that we chose to travel to Spain is that there were a number of women who had already been to Israel, but wanted another trip, another Jewish experience, so we started thinking of other places in the world with rich Jewish content that we could explore together, and Jewish Spain was a place that seemed exciting to the group and to me personally. I am very grateful to Keshet for helping us build a trip that was exciting and fun and sophisticated, and all the things we wanted the trip to be, but also was deeply grounded in Jewish content and Jewish experience, allowing us to connect with the Jewish community in Madrid which was a special pleasure, bringing a Jewish frame and lens to the southern part of the country as well.

Kayla was first our tour educator and leader in Israel, and the knowledge she brings to Israel is simply exceptional. Kayla is more than just a tour leader, she really is an educator. She was so great that when we found out that Kayla has a background in medieval Jewish Spain, we got very excited to plan our second trip with her to Spain, to use her as our tour leader again. What Kayla brought to the trip cannot be overstated, she really was exceptional.

In certain ways being in Europe is more similar to being in America, and some of the questions we ask ourselves as American Jews are some of the same questions we can look at when exploring Jewish Spain - how to maintain a sense of Jewish identity, while also finding a way to assimilate into the broader culture.

Rabbi Annie Tucker - Princeton Jewish Center

 

 

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