By Anice Stark
Friday, Tu B’Shvat, this is the day we all look forward to – helping JNF -KKL with this big family day. We left bright and early, dressed in our colorful JNF-KKL sweatshirts, to the Ben Shemen forest, one of the oldest planted forests in Israel. When we arrived there were already crowds of people waiting to be given the trees to plant. The planting hill with all the flags and pre-dug holes just waiting for little saplings was a site to see. The first early arrivals were a group of school children mostly young school children singing TuBshvat songs. We were assigned jobs, to hand out the trees, give out candy bars to everyone, and show people to the areas to be planted. The 47 of us were busy, busy. It has been a rainy winter and it had rained through the night so the ground was quite muddy and as we walked down the hill to the planting area our shoes became caked with mud – at least a couple pounds of mud. But, then came the rain, cold and wet – we trudged back up with the through the mud, 47 CAARI people eager to work and help out on this special day, but the cooler heads prevailed and so back to the bus we went.