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Breanna Wimbush

September 13, 2019

Honors English 12

Batten Honors Essay

Exploring the world has always been one of my greatest desires. Unfortunately for me, I

have never been outside the United States. As a result, deciding which country I would like to

live in for a year has proved difficult; however, I want that country to represent my religious and

cultural heritage. I know I have ancestors from Germany, the Netherlands, and Africa. While

Germany and the Netherlands would be the easiest countries to visit, considering they are actual

countries and not a continent, these Western European countries have influenced American

culture today and therefore would not have as profound of an impact on me. And as mentioned

before, Africa is a continent and I do not know in which country my ancestors resided. Luckily,

there is one other country that holds my interest and that I believe represents my religious

heritage. This country is Israel, and I would love to live in Israel for an entire year.

Israel is the origin of three major religions: Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. As a

Christian it would be amazing to see Israel. To walk where Jesus walked and to be baptized

where Jesus was baptized, I believe would be the ultimate cultural experience. I cannot imagine

a more intense experience involving the religion in which I believe. However, Christianity

would not be the only religion I would experience there. I would be able to see three different

cultures in Israel, becoming well-versed in topics I otherwise would not know much about. In

addition to the religious history of Israel, I would love to see museums showing their courage

after World War II when the Jews returned to their homeland and fought for it with their motto
“Never again.” To see their perspective on the various wars and what happened during them, I

believe, would be an enlightening experience. Also, Golda Meir is someone whom I admire

greatly. She was strong woman that fought for Israel with all she had, and though I cannot meet

her, I would be able to see the great things she did and allowed her country to accomplish.

Lastly, there is one more reason I would want to live in Israel for a year. It may not be

the most culturally impacting or profound reason, but it is nevertheless important. I am not a very

strong swimmer; I can swim but remaining afloat takes a lot of energy out of me. If I were to go

to Israel, I would be able to swim in the Dead Sea which is very dense due to the amount of salt

within the lake. For this reason, I would be able to float with virtually no trouble at all and that

would be very nice. At the end of this year long visit I would have gained so much knowledge

and I hope I would have gained a newfound understanding not only of Christianity, but also

Judaism and Islam. Also, floating on my back for the first time in the Dead Sea would be a

spectacular bonus.