sweat and dirt

i’m not quite sure where i’m going with this one…just gonna talk about the week.

sunday night we set off for the field.  thursday night i took a shower. soap and water fought hard against dirt and grease and after about a half an hour finally won the battle…

all week sweat ran down my body and mixed with the dusty summer earth of the hills in the golan-.  some of the boys complain about serving with girls, but oddly they didn’t say a peep about the baby wipes i brought, or the tweezers to pull out thorns, or the cous cous i prepared on the little camping stove.  on the other hand, i kinda sat around and did nothing at one stage of the competition between squads which involved only physical work.  for a moment i felt inadequate, but i realized that in the end, our main shtick is shooting rockets, and guys and girls press buttons and step on gas pretty much equally.

even though the week was extremely tiring and could be described as nothing but filthy, there was something liberating about spending the entire time outdoors, so far from some of the most basic aspects of what we call normal life.  no grooming other than teeth brushing and face washing, no toilets, no media whatsoever, no music, nothing reminiscent of decor or design, no advertisements, not even a mirror…just a backpack and one piece suit which i never changed out of and a giant truck with a rocket launcher in a field in the middle of nowhere.  at the end of one hot and trying day i lay in my sleeping bag under the camouflage net canopied from our vehicle and watched the calming wind shoot dancing ripples across the material above me.  to my left was heavy machinery, heaps of olive, snoring soldiers; to my right was a softly fading twilight, the black silhouettes of wheaty grasses swaying against a periwinkle sky, singing crickets, and a sweet, caressing breeze.  for a moment i forgot where i was. 

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this is the remainder of my squad, and in the middle is the turtle we found one day.

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so i made him the squad mascot.  and no, it doesn’t hurt a turtle to write on his shell…don’t start yelling at me for animal abuse…he’s got a cooler shell than all the rest of the turtles now.

oh, speaking of animal abuse…

i’ve decided that i’m a flexipescetarian.  a flexitarian is someone that isn’t quite vegetarian as they eat meat on occasion, and a pescetarian is someone that eats a vegetarian diet with the addition of fish.  in general i think that the act of killing innocent animals and feasting on their flesh is a great idea, but the way they are treated up until that point is usually inhumane.  even in the torah god gives us guidelines as to how to treat animals, and the modern system does not operate in the spirit of those standards.  i’ve felt this way for a while, but i only acted on it for about a year or two when i went on a free range kosher bit…which i guess i’m going back to.  so that’s one thing.  another is that i believe that people should eat less meat (meat as in moo or baa) because the raising of livestock can be attributed to about 18% of the global warming effect…waaaaayyy more than transportation (according to a study by the food and agricultural organization of the un).  but all this is speaking of what i will do with my money, not exactly about what i will eat, which is why i must be put in the category of semi.  if someone’s serving it, i’ll eat it…and being in the army, i only have the opportunity to buy food a couple days a week…so all this is pretty irrelevant for the next year and 2 months.  one more thing.  having a house w/o meat helps free up any kosher issues in israel…my religious friends will be able to eat at my house while i won’t have to mess with the inconvenience of having two sets of everything.  oh, but i think i’ll start after my vacation to america in 4 weeks…haha 🙂

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