Well, in all my years of hosting I have never had a guest from Israel until now. There is a feature on Couchsurfing that tells you who is looking for hosts in your area. I saw “Joe’s” requests for hosts in the area and I offered him a place in our home. His name is Chagai but he says to call him “Joe”, much easier to pronounce.
We just happen to be returning from PA and he was staying at a house on our way home – so we offered him a ride. He was very grateful. He was relying on public transport which is not really the best for this area.
From the moment we picked him up, I realized that I was very happy with my decision to host him. He was a very affable young man and my daughter took right to him. So did my husband and I.
Our first stop was a beach party in my friend’s neighborhood. We all had a great time and “Joe” got to enjoy a pig roast and lots of homemade grub. My husband taught him how to play corn hole and we introduced him around the party. GREAT time for all of us! We dropped him off at the local street festival on the way home and later we all had an enjoyable cookout al fresco. We even roasted marshmallows and taught him about s’mores.
I told him what sites to see and offered him a bike so he could get a great feel for the city. The next night we took him to one of our favorite hangouts – Ram’s Head Tavern on West Street. They have a lovely garden in the back – we enjoyed the ambience and local fare with a crab cake sandwich and crab dip. He talked a lot about what it’s like being Jewish and living in Jerusalem and we shared stories about our military experiences.
The next day I took him to a business mixer and he met lots of new people at a local hotspot, Mother’s. Then the last night we all went out to a block party and had a lovely time eating, drinking and meeting more people. Oh and we also took him to our local pool to relax between all of the activities. He enjoyed that as well.
It sounds so cliché, but we were all sad to see Joe leave. Jerusalem is definitely on my bucket list.