First of all, I feel really great about myself upon reaching this goal of riding my bike from Jerusalem to Eilat. When I was younger and jogged with the JCC early birds, I wanted to run at least one marathon. My knees gave out before I could realize that goal. I always felt bad about that. I have the best wife in the entire world. It was Judy who got me to do this trip. She wanted me to exercise for all the right health reasons. I hadn't found one that really motivated me since I gave up jogging. She told me that I couldn't go back to Israel until I rode in the Hazon bike ride. That threat was enough to get me training. She continued to encourage me or at least put up with my training when it interfered with our lives together. When we visited San Francisco this past summer, she insisted that I rent a bike and go riding across the Golden Gate Bridge. The best part of the deal was I still continued to go to Israel every year since 2005!
I have to admit that the ride in Israel was the draw and not raising money for the Arava Institute and Hazon, no matter how much good they do in the world (although I didn't know too much about the A.I.) But now that I see what wonderful works they do, somewhere in the trip they became the focus and purpose of the ride instead of biking. I am glad that I have raised $5600.00. I am hoping that I can fund raise another $400.00 to make it an even $6000.00 before the books close on Dec. 31.
Would I do the ride again. Absolutely! A couple of Hebrew College Students went on the ride and if Hillel goes on it next year when he is already in Israel, I would certainly ride join Kenny and Lily (if he can convince her to ride) and become part of team Rabinoff-Goldman-Greene. Otherwise, in a couple of years I can see putting together a team Marathon. /We could field a pretty good team. One of the things I learned was people who rode with me, came in all different sizes, shapes, ages, and condition. Take my word they weren't all sleek greyhounds. Some of whom, I couldn't believe actually could ride in the shape they were, but they found their comfort level and completed the course. People just have to remember that it is a ride and not a race. There were 3 different levels of rides from short to crazy long and we were completely supported with SAG buses. The organizers of the tour went out of the way to accommodate each riders needs. The food was excellent and plenty. Pit stops every 5-6 miles and rest stops every 14-16 miles.
Finally what a way to see Israel.