Social Life


Is It All Work?

Team and Staff members come from all around the world for many reasons: the adventure of foreign travel in a safe yet educational mattenvironment, intellectual stimulation, and – yes- even a love of digging in the dirt. The youngest Team Member will be 18, the oldest perhaps 74. They will be students, doctors, construction workers, professors, bureaucrats, day care workers, actors and artists. As the season progresses, and your acquaintanceships deepen, you will find you have a great deal to discuss with, and to learn from the people sharing this experience with you. Depending on the level of your interest in archaeology,history and ancient Canaan and Israel, you will find many conversation partners from every reach of the world.

Places to Go, Things to Do

During their daily free time, the Team Members will probably hang out on the lawn next to our rooms or by the swimming pool. For those of you who have energy left after a day on the tel, there is usually someone ready for a game of soccer or basketball. For the indoor types there is a Pool Table and large screen TV available in the Kibbutz “Pub” and on some evenings dancing.

swimming poolWeekends

Weekends begin Thursday afternoon and end Saturday evening. Our rates cover your room for the whole length of your stay and full board on workdays only. You can choose to stay on the Kibbutz for the entire weekend or to take day trips. (See below ‘What about Grub?).

Weekends are also a convenient time to do some shopping. Banks and shops are open on Thursday afternoon and Friday morning but close for the Sabbath from Friday afternoon until sunset Saturday evening. There is no public transportation from late Friday afternoon until Saturday evening. Team members often share rental cars or group taxis. They have even rented a bus! Explore Dan and Banias, Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee one weekend, and the coast from Caesarea to Ashkelon the next. Tel Aviv is an hour away and Jerusalem less than two hours’ drive.

The Kibbutz office will be happy to advise you about bus trips, car rentals or taxis, or just provide advice on how to get the best from your weekends. Returning Team Members always have favorite places to recommend.

Living On The Dig

Where We Stay

The Expedition is housed at Kibbutz Ramat Hashofet, a 10-minute drive from the tel.kibbutz3

Kibbutz Ramat Hashofet, situated on the Menashe plateau some 23 km from Haifa and 87 km from Tel Aviv, was founded by settlers from Poland, Lithuania, Hungary, and Bulgaria. Today, the majority of the kibbutz members are second generation kibbutz born. Kibbutz Ramat Hashofet is situated in what is almost the central point of the country, with excellent roads connecting Tel Aviv, Haifa and the north of Israel. Aside from Hebrew, the languages of the kibbutzniks are quite varied. They include English, French, Spanish, Yiddish, Russian, Polish, German, Dutch, and Italian.

Living on the Kibbutz during the excavation season is an excellent opportunity to see how a modern communal organization operates. This is their workplace, social center and educational base.

kibbutzWhere Are Our Accommodations?

Team members will stay in the Kibbutz guest rooms. Every room has air conditioning, private bathroom facilities, a television and a kitchenette with refrigerator and an electric kettle. A set of plates and cutlery is provided for each Team member. Team members may be housed up to four to a room. All rooms are non-smoking.

What About Grub?

Three meals per working day are provided. The food is kosher, so no pork is served and meat is prepared according to Jewish dietary law — that means meat and milk dishes are never served together (but there is no kashrut certificate). Vegetarian dishes are always available (but do let us know if you are vegetarian or need a special diet).

blade eatingIn order to keep the kitchen kosher, no dishes or cutlery from the dining area or breakfast buffet can be taken back to your rooms or vice versa. We suggest you bring or buy disposable plastic items if you wish to prepare food in your room or have guests. There is a microwave oven available in our Club Room and a number of BBQ grills just outside.

Team Members are responsible for providing their own early morning snack before heading to the Tel. Coffee, tea, bread, biscuits etc. can be purchased at the kibbutz store which is open 7 days a week. Breakfast is provided five days a week (Sunday to Thursday). It is a dairy buffet bar and is served at picnic tables in a shady grove on the Tel.

Lunch is provided five days a week (Sunday to Thursday). It is a meat meal and is the main daily meal.

Dinner is provided five days a week (Saturday to Wednesday). It is a dairy or light meat meal.

Weekend Meals (Thursday night till Saturday lunch)

The Expedition does not provide meals on the weekend. You can prepare cold meals in your room (there is a kitchenette with a refrigerator, barbeque2plates and cutlery in each room). Or prepare a hot meal in the Club House microwave oven, which also has a sink and a large refrigerator, tables, chairs and a television. Outside of your rooms there are grills for BBQ. The kibbutz mini-market stocks a wide selection of foodstuffs, e.g. cereals, dairy products, cold cuts, salads, plus meat and supplies suitable for a BBQ. In addition if you miss your American style Pizza – there are a number of local Pizza delivery and similar services in the nearby town of Yokneam – and you can enjoy a pizza and a soft drink or humous and falafel. On Saturday, at the kibbutz swimming pool, there is usually a lady from the local Druze community preparing and selling a local cheese speciality food.

Diet

Israel’s tap water is safe and potable. The food provided by the expedition is reasonably bland but your digestive system needs time to adapt to new foods as with all foreign travel. Eat carefully, especially at first, and be sure to drink much more water than you think you actually need. The greatest medical danger to you is dehydration.

Email

We have a free Wi-fi set-up in the Club Room. However, we cannot provide a computer; so either bring your own laptop or make friends with another Team member who has one!

Enroute to breakfastLaundry

The kibbutz provides a laundry service at a cost of $1.50 per kilo. Team Members are responsible for delivering and collecting their own laundry. All items sent must be clearly labeled in indelible ink with the person’s family name. Small items such as underwear and socks must be placed in a reusable net laundry bag that can be obtained on the kibbutz. Drying racks are provided outside your room if you wish to hand launder any delicate or favorite items, but you will need to bring your own detergent or purchase some at the kibbutz store.

Linen

The Kibbutz furnishes bed linen and launders it weekly. You need to bring towels. We suggest one for the bathroom and one for the Swimming Pool.

MorningShopping

The Kibbutz has a mini-market that operates 7 days a week, it should be able to provide for almost all your wants and desires. The prices are the same as one would find in the city shops. Payment can be by cash or your usual credit card.

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8 Responses to “Social Life”

  1. Is there married housing provided?

  2. digmegiddo Says:

    No, there is not. However, in the recent past, one married couple arranged to rent a house on the kibbutz, rather than sleep apart. It cost them a fair amount extra, but they thought it was worth it.

  3. Can a 17 year old rising high school senior be accepted?

  4. Is anything special done on Friday nights for Shabbat on the kibbutz?

    • digmegiddo Says:

      It’s up to the individual kibbutzniks, I believe; we are not usually on the kibbutz for Friday nights, since the “weekend” for us during digging season is from Thursday afternoon through Saturday evening.

  5. Can I mail something from home if it was forgotten?

    • digmegiddo Says:

      Of course. The kibbutz gets regular postal service. Be sure to use the Kibbutz B&B address, but also put THE MEGIDDO EXPEDITION in the address…

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