Reuniting with BBYO Passport Friends at IC

March 4, 2024
Shayna Horwitz

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Class of 2025

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While BBYO has always been a source of joy for me, the feeling of comfort and happiness it provided me at IC was like no other, and this was entirely due to my BBYO Passport friends.

Last summer, I embarked on BBYO Passport’s Ultimate Central Europe and Israel trip. I planned on going with some camp friends, but a large percentage of my 48-person bus was new people. Over the course of the 5-week trip, I got to know these people on a deeper level, and we formed extremely close connections. We bonded through our shared love for Judaism, appreciation for other cultures, and our trip experiences. This group was there for me through the highs and the lows of the experience, and I can say with absolute certainty that there’s no one I’d rather have gone on that trip with.

When the end of the 5 weeks arrived, and we all had to say our goodbyes, I was overwhelmed with tears at the airport. Most of my friends I’d made lived in other states, and some even lived in other countries. However, we all had one thing to look forward to: IC.

I counted down to IC for months, filling the time with frequent FaceTime calls with my friends and texting them constant updates about the good, bad, and mundane in my life - much like I’d done on the trip. Finally, the day arrived.

I met up with some of my friends at the airport, and I had to wait until I got back to the hotel to see others. As we embraced for the first time in months, a smile appeared on my face like never before.

I spent the whole IC weekend with my Passport friends - catching up on each other’s lives, reminiscing on past memories, and enjoying each other’s company. The time arrived all too soon to say goodbye, where again, I cried into their arms. But thankfully, we planned a time to see each other again soon.

These types of long-distance friendships are incredibly difficult. I spend every day wishing I could see my friends’ faces, run up to them and hug them, or immediately turn to them for comfort. However, this pain makes reunions so much more special. I’m so grateful to have made these unbelievably amazing connections, and even more grateful to BBYO for providing me with the best people I could ever ask for.

Shayna Horwitz is a BBG from Chabibi BBG #325: Northstar Council who loves spending time with friends and family!

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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