Friday, we checked into the hotel where Team Yachad was staying. Team Yachad staff had put together our race kits in nice backpacks and provided us with our shirts to wear at the race, a headband and either a hair clip or a kipah. There were also bags from junees.com filled with water, food and treats. Junees is a huge sponsor of Team Yachad and they have been for years. They deserve huge props.
We settled into our room and went for a swim and then went back and got ready for Shabbat. Services were very nice with Sam leading -He had amazing sincerity (kavana) and a beautiful voice. After services we had a lovely dinner. We sat with the judges and Susie and Shabsa, a couple from Chicago. It was a super table and we actually repeated it at every meal!
Yachad has serious spirit! (ruach) and it was not lost on me that the ruckus kicked up by so many high school students standing in their chairs and singing added so much to my shabbat experience!
Shabbat morning we slept in but lunch was again lovely and that amazing ruach was still there. At all the meals, there were speakers (including yours truly) and they were incredibly inspiring!
After a beautiful end to shabbat that reminded me a lot of our shul at home, we all went to get into our team colours for photos and the carb loading meal. I don't know about you but I can't imagine herding so many people (over 200!) into a group pic!
This morning we woke up at 3 am, had breakfast and went off to the race, which I am going to address in my next blog post! Upon our return there was a victory lunch and thank you speeches as well as presentation of certificates and then most of us retired to the pool and ocean to cool our hot muscles and try to recover! Tonight a super bowl party (although sort of sad because we had already lost some of our crew to their flights home!)
I have never felt so appreciated and warmly welcomed. Yachad KNOWS how important each runner and each supporter is and we were truly treated as such!