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Yovav Kalifon

Jerusalem, Jerusalem district, Israel

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Last login 2 days ago

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Overview

  • 126 Positive References
  • Fluent in English, Hebrew (modern); learning Arabic, French, Hindi, Malayalam, Spanish, Yiddish
  • 33, Male
  • Member since 2006
  • No thank you
  • M.Sc. in Theoretical Physics
  • From Kibbutz Tsubah in the Jodean hills
  • Profile 100% complete

About Me

CURRENT MISSION

To realize I don't need missions

ABOUT ME

I am a 31 year old Israeli who recently finished a M.Sc. program in theoretical physics and is now trying to make up for it by having crazy fun and seeing more of the actual world.

I recently came back to Israel to attend my brother's wedding. I crossed in to Israel from Jordan after flying there from India after sailing there from Egypt after going there by bus after hitchhiking to the border from where I am sitting right now...

I moved out of Kibbutz Tsubah to live in Jerusalem. I work very irregularly, giving private math/physics lessons when students show up at the door, and translating academic articles whenever clients find me.

I got into the peace business and started working on solutions to the Arab-Israeli conflict. I created this project with the help of Israeli and Palestinian volunteers: http://www.tiyul-rihla.org/ you should check it out because it is actually more interesting than it seems at first glance.

The idea of my current life style is to leave maximal free time to do my own thing at home. I started learning basic programming skills, Arabic, playing the guitar, learning selected chapters in math/physics, reading a bunch of things, and basically going with the flow and expanding my horizons. Now that I am managing a project, I am looking into NGO stuff, fundraising, financing, social networking, and other messy stuff.

Having all this free time is really an illusion. I usually feel like I get nothing done and that I'm pressed for time. Freelancing might not be ideal for me, and if you'll check what I wrote under "Mission" you'll see I have an internal conflict to solve.

PHILOSOPHY

This life is one big learning experience. Open your eyes, your ears and your heart. Take it all in, and please, please, try not to disturb the rest of the class!

Why I'm on Couchsurfing

HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING

I started out as a surfer in Latin America.
Once back in Israel I became active in local groups, showed up for events, hosted a handful of people on special occasions, but mostly I surfed.

I created a group called "P.I.T.A Hummus" to help surfers find worthy hummus on their worldly travels.

As a traveler I keep an eye on the local CS scene and look for interesting activities near me.

As a local I try to be helpful, though I'm less active than I used to be. I am connected to other local scenes so I can say something relevant to Couchsurfers from time to time.

COUCHSURFING EXPERIENCE

In Latin America I was hosted through the CS project and it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I came back to Israel all inspired to be as good of a host as the ones I've had, to keep surfing in my own country, and be a part of this amazing community.

I can't recall having a bad experience with CS, though news of bad experiences are abundant, and I don't ignore them. I try to find out what's going on and who are the people I interact with. I hope that with your help we can keep CS a positive, constructive and happy place, thereby promoting the idea of a better world in general.

Interests

Anything can be made interesting, maybe even fascinating. For example, the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is sneeze. It fascinates me.

I used to love science but that became a casual interest/occupation. I appreciate philosophical dialogues more, culture and history, languages, travels, human beings, things that matter.

Music, Movies & Books

I enjoy movies if they are well made or somehow unique, no matter the genre, new or old, well known or unheard of. I love the Cohen Bros.
Same goes for music - I'd rather hear something unknown to me rather than my usual favorites. Traditional Jewish music (Klezmer) and more modern Hebrew music (Einstein, Banai) is most moving. I also get a reaction to Andean music (El Condor Pasa) and some Latin tunes (Mercedes Sosa).
Books, for me, have to be informative or otherwise excellent, or else I probably wouldn't finish them ("Tough Jews", "The closed circle", "Oh Jerusalem", "The dwellers on the Nile", "The covenant of the wild", "Biology of belief", "The Prince"). Only in Spanish do I find the patience to finish a novel (Gabriel García Márquez).

One Amazing Thing I've Done

Jogging like a maniac down Nahal Dragot stream, wearing nothing but my boxer shorts, sandals and sun-glasses, trying to find a cell phone with reception to place a call for a rescue team to come pull out my friend who broke his leg somewhere up stream.
On Shabbat!

Eventually, an army helicopter (unit 669) pulled him out and took him to Hadasa hospital. He was high on morphine by the time I got there with his worried wife. He was super excited about the army, the chopper, the hike we had, even the medical care he received. He seemed so happy. Once the drugs faded and the bills came, his mood changed... He flew back to Portugal to recover, which will take years, but he says he'll be back to finish the hike.

More recently I spent over 40 days at sea, sailing from Hurghada (Egypt) to Cochin (India). What a blessing it was to land in Cochin after such a difficult ride...

Teach, Learn, Share

Science, English and Hebrew - I can teach.
Building or fixing something - I can help.
Playing piano/guitar and dancing - show me how.

I try to pick up the local language wherever I am. I can help you practice your Hebrew/Spanish. Can you help me practice my Arabic/French?

Countries I've Visited

Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Egypt, France, Germany, India, Jordan, Malta, Mexico, Peru, Turkey

Countries I've Lived In

Israel

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