Our one reservation that day was for Leket. Leket is a nonprofit that used to be called table to table and was begun by a Bergen County ex-pat. The organization rescues unused food from restaurants, catering services etc., as well as from farms, and delivers them to Israel's hungry population. ND and I have both heard the founders speak at different venues and were eager to come glean for them.
Before we would go there though, we decided to hit one more destination in Ein Gedi, Wadi David. In fact, we didn't realize it until now, but the hostel where we were staying was actually next door to the park filled with trails. I wish we had had more time to explore, but even the easiest trail was a bit precarious in spots. Advertised as one of the easier family hikes, it climbs up to a lovely water fall. However, along the way there are a whole lot of rocks, a warning about potential falling rocks pushed down by ibexes and a few single file slippery spots where water washed over the rocky path. This was actually just about the level of adventure I like... do-able, but at least with a little feeling of risk. Signage for other trails warned to stay away unless you were a very fit hiker. So we were in and out in the hour we had budgeted and on our way to the fields in Rehovot.
There isn't a ton to tell about picking with Leket, except that we really really enjoyed it. Our volunteer coordinator was from Denver originally and had an excellent memory for people. Through a quick game of Jewish Geography we quickly identified that she was friends with our formerly Vancouver friends in Modi'in. In addition, at the end of our time, when she asked us what was next, we told how we would be staying with friends in Jerusalem. How did we know these friends? Because they had lived for about 3 years near us in Tenafly and we were looking forward to meeting their new baby who had been born since their return to Israel. Right away our guide said, "oh, I think I met her when she was very very pregnant. She came and, well, sat, while the family she was with picked. I think there was an archaeologist with them." Yep... Those friends were friends of ours too from our shul back home. Small small Jewish world.
So Leket, itself, in one word:
We picked enough beets to feed 100 families (who I hope would be eating other things too.) There was a Teaneck family there too who helped at first but ended up leaving early as the day was hot and the beets were staining. So the 100 beets were our work alone. What a proud way to end the day.