I thought my last blog would be the last for 2009, but alas, I wanted to share what I heard today with my three (or is it four?) readers.
I've joined a footy team that competes in the Anglo League in Israel. Each team is allowed to have 2 Israelis on the pitch, and I was giving one of our Israelis a ride to the game from Jerusalem. As we discussed each other, Rannie started talking about his impressive football background - at least for an Israeli! He came up through the ranks of the Beitar youth system, playing the game with current Beitar stars like Aviram Bruchian & Barak Yitzchaki. As he started to detail aspects of their games, I asked him why he wasn't with them on the pitch every weekend at Teddy. His answer startled me, "I joined the army." So I prodded more, "You're telling me you could have played professionally but you gave it up to do 3 years in the army?" His reply filled me with admiration, "I was offered a professional contract. I thought about it and decided that I live in Israel and I'd serve the country the full 3 years in a combat unit."
Here's a guy who's given his whole life to achieving a dream - and when the day comes for making the dream a reality, he turns it down for the IDF. Unreal. What a role model ...