Day 7 & 8

Days Eight and nine.

The last few days we have traveled down the Pacific coast. As the pictures attest, the country is amazingly beautiful. We are mostly on route 101, which unfortunately is a major trucking route and has only intermittent shoulders, so the trip is somewhat hair-raising. Every now and then there are small side roads that are empty and gorgeous.

Two of my riding mates have lived in Israel for 43 and 12 years. Last night at dinner we talked about life on the kibbutzim. The guy who has lived on the kibbutz for 43 years moved there just after graduating college at Cornell. He is bright, articulate, and informed, but spent most of the last 43 years milking cows and shoveling cow dung, because that is what the kibbutz needed. It is a level of commitment to a community that I don’t think I could match. I guess I’m not alone: of the 240 kibbutzim that were originally started in Israel, only 40 continue to have this collective model. I guess it is one of the few places were true communism has succeeded; one reason maybe that it is entirely voluntary.

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