Sunday, January 30, 2011

Kickin a little knowledge!

Hey hey everyone!! Well these past two weeks have just flown by! I can't believe it's already about to be February!!! And you know what that means...it's Black History Month! I've decided that during this month, I'm going to have one fact a day for my teammates to help them understand our culture and heritage a little bit. They've done such a phenomenal job with helping us understand their culture and history, that I think it's the least I can do for them! SO, if YOU have any facts you'd like me to share with them, post them on the comments section and I'll be sure to share! :-)
Since the last time I wrote ya'll, we have played 3 games. We have won all 3!! Our first win was against the #2 team in our league, Ramat Hasharon. We played at home and right from the tip we came out firing on all cylinders. Our next game we played was on the road against our city "rival" Elizur Rishon. Even though this team is at the bottom of the league, they have talented players and have put up some tough games and fought hard until the end. We played very sluggish in the first half and were down by double digits at half time. We got ourselves together in the locker room and came back with a much better second half. The last game we played was at home this past Thursday against Holon. They have a very talented and experienced team. One of their players, Sheri Sam, is 38 and has played in the WNBA. Could you imagine playing at that age and still being on top of your game!? I think that's amazing! Our crowd was so electric!! One of my teammate's brother was there playing the big drum I told you about before! The little girls that come to our games were blowing horns and cheering the WHOLE game! It was great! Afterwards, we were taking pictures and signing autographs for them. This Monday we play at Ashdod, the game I got hurt in last time we played them. It's a big game for us because we only have 2 games left in regular season and a win over Ashdod by more than 13 would put us ahead of them.
Fried chicken, cabbage and mac & cheese!
Now, to the fun stuff that's happened! Having Danielle's family here was such a blast!! We had them stay here instead of paying all that money for a hotel. They brought air mattresses and camped out downstairs. It reminded me of summer basketball camps back in high school! :-) They cooked at least 4 out of the 7 days they were here! It was so good!!!
Oh! And no worries! Our yogurt place is back open for business!!! We found out that our guy had sold his yogurt place to this other owner...so they were remodeling and reopening it under a different name! It's still the same great yogurt...even better I think! :-) We've gotten to know the new owner pretty well!
Look how precious!! :-)
Yesterday was such a special day!!! My mom and niece celebrated their birthdays!!! My niece Adalina turned 1 and my mom turned 29! :-) I was sad I couldn't be there with them on their special day, but I definitely sent my love :-)
Our little Israeli "thugs" LOL!!!
The last thing I will leave you with...is the transformation of my Israeli teammates.  This is what happens when you stay at our apt too long after a team dinner LOL! 






Hebrew Lesson: I don't know= Lo Yoda'at (lo-yo-dot)
That's all for today's walk in my Nikes!
Until next time,
Alysha.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Happy New Year!

Hey hey everyone! I'm sorry it's been a little while since I last posted, but I was at home for the holidays and then when I got back here to Israel I've been trying to readjust! But I'm back and have lots of good stuff to share with you guys!
Let's start with basketball! Before the break we played a Hapoel Tel Aviv, which only has 5 players! Could you imagine?! We won by 20+. We were all soooo excited before the game because we knew once that game was over it was time to actually head home!  After the game, my roommates and I came home and stayed up ALL night! We packed, listened to music, drank coffee and updated our iPods with new music. We were just so excited to go home!
When we got back from break we played Bnot Hasharon at home,  a team we beat earlier in the year. It was definitely a battle out there! Both teams were so physical and so determined to make the other team work for their points. We ended up losing by 9. We needed to not lose by more than 8 so we they couldn't pass us in the rankings. One stinking point! Yesterday, we played Ramat Hen at their place. We played well for the first 3 quarters and then kind of fell off after that. We ended up losing by 17, almost the same score from last time! Ugh. But we are now 7-6 and in 6th place.
So, the first thing I got when I landed in New Jersey was a caesar salad! Over here they put tomatoes, pecans and other stuff that's not supposed to be in one! When I landed in Nashville my dad and best friend Christian picked me up from the airport! She greeted me with a sign and red vines (my favorite!)
Best welcome home gift!


Our coach gave us a 10 day break, which is almost unheard of over here! I was so happy!
Now on to the other fun stuff that's been going on in my world! We had our first visitor before we left for break!! My roommate Danielle's mentor, Jessica, came to visit us for 2 weeks! It's great how this all worked out for her! She is Jewish and has been looking to plan a trip to Israel and then Danielle got placed over here to play so she was so excited that she was actually going to come now :-) When she came we took her sight seeing around Jerusalem. We took her to see the Western Wall, part of the Old City and of course to indulge in some traditional Israeli cuisine :-) We also went to the Dead Sea! That was such an experience! It was just so calming and peaceful there! Just in case you didn't know, as soon as you get in the water you float! Yep that's right! No special holding your breath tricks....you just float! If I wanted to get my hair wet, I would have laid all the way back and just taken a nap! You don't have to worry about any sharks or mysterious sea monsters trying to eat you or nibble at your toes! The salt concentration in the water is soooooooooooooooo high! Oh my goodness! We licked a salt rock and almost gagged! Now, I like salt, but DANG! Haha. I'm sure there weren't any health risks in licking the rock. Jess took one home as a souvenir! I have to admit, my skin felt AMAZING when we got out and showered! It was so soft! On our way home, we stopped and rode a camel! It was scary because we were so high up, but also because I was afraid I might get spit on by one! I probably would have spit back if it did! LOL! But here are some pictures from that day:-)
View of Jerusalem
My face says it all in this picture! :-)


Danielle on her camel
At the Dead Sea!






Floating in the Dead Sea















Since we've gotten back we haven't done too much but try and get readjusted. We did however try and go for yogurt the other day after practice only to find out THEY'RE CLOSED!!!! We were so heart broken!! We went to every yogurt place on the main strip and every one was closed! Very sad day because I had 7 stickers on my card and when you get 9 stickers the 10th one is free! I think I shed a tear that day!
We are also getting our second round of visitors this week!! Danielle's mom, grandma, aunt, and aunt's friend are all coming this Friday! I'm excited because Danielle said they're going to be cooking like everyday! It'll be just like when I was home :-)
I also made plans with my teammates Becki and Keren to go to Jerusalem this Friday and go to the Holocaust museum there. I think this experience will be very educating and one I will never forget!

Today's Hebrew lesson: Targish Tov=Get better or feel better
That's all for today's walk in my Nikes! 
Until next time, 
Alysha