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Week 15 of my Study Abroad Experience in Haifa, Israel

Hello Everyone, I hope you all had a great week! This week was bittersweet for me because it is the last full week I get to spend with many of the friends that I have made here. Most of them are only studying abroad for one semester but I will be here for another one. The friends that I have made here are ones that I see lasting a lifetime. Each and every one of these people has touched my life in their own individual way. This is truly one of the most caring groups of people I have ever met and I know that it will not be the last time I see them. I plan on visiting my friend Jemima in Paris in a week and a half. We have all discussed a reunion trip in one of our hometowns and I know that we will make it happen. I am so grateful for this study abroad experience because I have been able to meet so many new people from all around the world. Next semester I will have the opportunity to meet even more people and I am happy about this.

Moreover, as the semester comes to an end I am looking forward to my travel plans over the break. I will be going to Cyprus, Malta, Morocco, Paris, South Africa, and Budapest throughout the break in between the two semesters. My break is from Jan 8th – Feb 17th. During my break, I plan on keeping my brain active by reading up on the conflict within the Middle East and studying all of the Arabic flashcards I made during the semester.

Lastly, I would like to share an interesting perspective that I have gained from this week. If you watched the news this week, it is hard to miss the amount of fear that is circulating due to the current escalation in the Middle East because of the death of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in an airstrike in Iraq. I have attached a CNN link to an article that further explains this situation.

One line from the above article states that “One pro-Iranian Iraqi cleric, Qais al-Khazali, called for the removal of US forces from Iraq and for the “demise” of Israel, as a response to the deaths of Soleimani and al-Muhandis.”

Additionally, I have received several emails warning me to exercise increased caution in the country that is now a second home to me. Personally, I have not felt unsafe since this event has taken place but I do wonder what is going to happen next because there is a lot of uncertainty in the air. It is unfortunate to say, but the local people here seem rather unphased by this event because it is such a normal part of their lives. Living here has enabled me to look at these events in an entirely new light and has provided me with an unmatched first-hand perspective of the conflict. I am very satisfied with my decision to study here and do not regret it for a second.

I would like to thank everyone for reading this week!

Picture from the last dinner with my friends from the international school.

Join the Conversation


  1. Thanks again for your informative blog.
    Stay safe and enjoy your break!.. much love and respect, Loyce & John.


  2. Brendan, I’m so happy to hear that all is still going well for you! I have to admit, I was amongst those who really started to worry for you after the latest news from the middle east. It’s sad that the unrest is such a daily occurrence for them that what seem like major events to us leave people in the country un-phased. Still, it eases my mind to know that you are seeing first hand how the locals react and you feel a sense of comfort in their behavior. I look forward to your blog each week and to see the new perspective you’re gaining!


  3. Brendan, after the news today(Feb 7th), I have more concern and pray for your safety! Hoping your vacation goes on as planned.
    We will be looking for more blogs soon. πŸ™πŸ™

    Liked by 1 person

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