by Bernie Suskin
¬†Our pluga was doing masah chuliot up in the Galil. We started out at kibbutz Sasa and I was together with Arnie Sher of Cape Town. Can't remember how it happened but suddenly we found ourselves at Hasolelim. Quite a few of our mahzor had done the initial pre-tironut period there, Ronnie Richterand his brother Joey, Lionel(Yehudah) Gordon, to mention a few. Anyway to cut a long story short we came there and were treated like royalty, great grub, a hot shower and sent on our way feeling one helluvah lot better than on arrival.
There's another story that sticks out in my mind involving all our group on Tel Katzir before tironoot: The South African "fighterim" were put into the original wooden "tsrifim" on the one side of the hill about a hundred metres away from the relatively new buildings.
A few nights after we arrived we were awoken by loud gunfire and noises of things falling onto the roofs of the tsrif plus other explosions etc.. It was pitch dark and all we heard was the shouting of the guys from the kibbutz telling us to get out and lay low. One of the guys in
my room got such a fright ( as if we all didn't!!!) and grabbed his bed and lifted over his head for protection..
When we were all outside on our stomachs someone began to shout "dum (blood) and then the guys from the kibbutz told us to crawl along the dirl road towards the kibbutz....a couple of our religious guys were praying loudly. As we rounded the corner leading there we were greeted by the whole kibbutz who were killing themselves laughing and saying ruefully," you'll make very good fighterim". We all took it in good spirit but I can tell you it seemed very real at
the time being right under the sights of the Syrians on the Golan!!! I think that at the time Tel Katzir was only 7 years young.
Wish I could remember some of the kibbutzniks!! They were a great bunch!!