My Women’s Parliament

Join Anat on her latest adventure in the Golan Heights together with her women’s group

Photo: Anat Schneider

My women's “parliament” met again for a trip. This time we decided to go to the Golan Heights to a moshav called Natur and to do a glass-making workshop. The trip from Jerusalem to the Golan via the Jordan Valley just days after late winter rains is one of the most beautiful sights that Israel has to offer.

We passed right through the desert landscape on the descent to the Dead Sea and as we headed north our eyes are washed with green. Green mountains and hills. You feel like getting out and petting the velvet hills. You just want to lay down there for a moment. To lay your head on a lush green pillow, to give yourself a rest, to relax, take it easy, as your eyes dart from spot to spot, from the sky to the ground, from the right to the left and back again as thousands of birds are migrating through the sky.

The month of March is exactly the beginning of the migration period, and the Jordan River Valley is full of birds as millions pass through the Land of Israel. In the car every other minute we’re screaming with joy as we catch sight of yet another flock of migrating birds – “look, look at this bird” – and we're all looking to the right and then screaming again as we see this flock on the left and we jerk our heads to the left. I admit, I can hardly remember the names of the birds, but there are two women in our group who are experts on the matter. Immediately a discourse begins between them – “that’s a titmouse,” says one – “no I don't think so,” says the other, just then yet another flock is tweeting, filling the sky over us, and so it goes, on and on.

It's the same story for the endless flowers that decorate the way. Entire hills of yellow with red, purple and pink scattered about. Here, too, I don't know many of the names, and here, again, my two expert friends report every name to us. If there's a flower they don't remember, you can be sure that the next day after checking it out, they will report the name to Ayelet and me.

And so our trip to the Sea of Galilee passes us by with great pleasure. When we reached the lake, we stopped by the water to have a coffee and to splash the water a bit to provide our senses with a little more to enjoy. The Sea of Galilee is surging over its banks this year, a lovely sight in itself. We've only got one freshwater lake in Israel and this year it is filled to bursting. What could be more wonderful than that?

After the break, it’s back into the car to begin the climb up through the Golan Heights. Once again our eyes never stopped admiring and registering the rare sights, a combination of mountains and colors, of smells and a variety of flowers. There are many pastures and many cows in the Golan Heights, and this too adds to the perfect picture.

We arrived at Moshav Natur in the Golan Heights where we had breakfast at a Cuban pace. The owner of the restaurant is from Cuba and is married to a local Israeli. Together they created a very integrated and delicious kitchen. But… very slow. It is worthwhile and recommended if you have a lot of time.

We didn't because at exactly 12:30 our glass workshop started. Rina our instructor called it "playing with fire" and who doesn't like to play with fire? The fire is at a temperature of 1200 degrees C, which is needed to melt the glass and then with the glass you can create jewelry, decorations, cups and bowls and much more. It is really mesmerizing as fire has a lot of power and strength. We learned to make butterflies and in honor of the new season we prepared a production called Corona. I always say I have two left hands when it comes to creations. My butterfly decided for some reason to take another form and became a heart ????.

But I enjoyed every second, the opportunity to take a break, the wonderful fellowship, the views and just being able to do something so different and so relaxing. We continued on to a really wonderful place called Ein Keshatot an archaeological site on the Golan Heights that I will tell you more about in another article. I informed my girlfriends that I would write about it. They were enthusiastic and suggested that maybe every month we would go out for a day of fun and provide an article. In the end we compromised on each quarter and we are already waiting for the next to come. After all, we have an amazing country.

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