A few excerpts from letters and emails from the new friends I’ve made:
We can’t thank you enough for our fabulous tour. Geoff said you were the best tour guide in Israel. So he set large expectations. You exceeded our expectations. Your knowledge, passion and ability to engage every member of our family was amazing. We loved your flex ability to start early or add an event based on how we were feeling. You took care of everything and allowed our family to decompress from our daily lives and learn so much. We be happy to be a reference for you if you ever need one.
Thank you so much for your kindness, dear Marty! We continue to talk about all you taught and showed us daily! God is really using you to tell the story of the history of Israel and His chosen people, and we pray that you consider writing or recording your “tours” in DVD media. Maybe we could begin the filming on our next adventure with you in Israel! With our recommendation of you, the group size could be growing…
Hi Marty,We are just starting back to the regular grind of our New Jersey lives, but Michael and I would be remiss if we didn’t take a moment to thank you for a fabulous job showing us around Israel during a difficult time. We don’t feel like we missed out on very much having come to the country during a military “show down.” We were concerned that it would be difficult for one guide to speak both to adults and to all the kids in our group, but I think your enthusiasm for the subject matter helped to hold the interest of everyone in our group. Everyone in my family learned a lot of new things about Israel and Jewish history (and Christian religious history). If you need a reference at any time, feel free to use our name. Hopefully we will have an opportunity to return to Israel and ask you to show us around some of the areas we missed this trip!
Most of all, THANK YOU MARTY for your excellence as a guide and the effortless way you became part of the family. Everybody in the family had the time of their life and much of that is attributable to your excellence as a guide but even more importantly, the warmth you showed the entire family. We all consider you an honorary member of the B***** family.
If I had a penny for each time I thought about our trip in May I could retire! It was my first but DEFINITELY not my last trip to Israel. Scripture takes on new meaning and image since being in Israel. THANK YOU for making our tour such a success. You were an INCREDIBLE guide and WHEN we return to Israel we will be sure that you are our guide. We are very blessed. Shalom Beth P******
We want to write to say once again thank you for an amazing Israel tour this past week in honor of our son’s Bar Mitzvah and daughter’s Bat Mitzvah. You were outstanding, skillfully engaging each member of our group (from age 75 to age 5, spanning Orthodox, Conservative and Reform). You made the Tanach and other highlights of Jewish history come alive with your stories and explanations for all ages. And we particularly appreciated how you flexed the schedule and kept us all at ease as we were able to keep touring throughout the recent rocket attacks. You were fun to be with and everyone enjoyed your company on the bus and at every exciting stop all week.
I can’t believe our trip has been over for almost two weeks. It was the best ! We all had a wonderful time learning and falling in love with Israel and you! You shared history, knowledge, passion and humor with us all! The trip was so smooth and perfect! I really want to let you know how much we appreciated everything you did! Would you mind sharing the story A*** read in Jaffe? I would like to put it together with a photo for her.
Marty, each adventure was a piece to a great picture. It was everything I hoped for…A once in a lifetime experience shared by family on the occasion of E***’s Bat Mitzvah. Thanks so much for sharing your passion for Israel! I am sure you will hear from different R** family members as the kids all say they are “going back.”
My Bar Mitzvah is coming up very soon and I would like for you to have one of my special kippas. I still remember standing on top of Masada with your tefillin on. Now it is the real thing and i would like you to help me celebrate this event. We all miss you.
Larry and I are still talking about fabulous trip. It is hard to believe that next Tuesday it will be two weeks.When I first returned home I could barely manage going anywhere by myself I was so used to having you and the family to follow. The farewell banquet summed up how important this journey was to each member of our family. You treated us like family. (although I am still waiting for my wedding invitation) You went out of your way to educate, give us insight into the Israeli way of life and let us feel the spiritual significance of what we were seeing. I feel very blessed to have you as my teacher and friend.
You always went above and beyond whatever your professional duties demanded, showing us many kindnesses and considerations. In large part, you contributed to making this, our third trip to Israel, the most meaningful one of all, by far. We will return home with a renewed sense of pride and love for this land and our people.
I want to again compliment Marty Friedlander Time and again, he raised thought-provoking questions. He shared stories and anecdotes that framed issues. He dealt with current events from the best qualities of a journalist – guiding us to become our own investigative reporters. And along the way we fell in love with Israel, its land and its people.
We came here with the goal of strengthening and deepening our own understanding of Israel, participating in everyday activities, Israeli style, and providing our daughters with an opportunity to experience Israel first-hand in a meaningful and happy setting – with your deep knowledge, unique sense of humor, warmth and support, you helped us make all these dreams come true. toda raba!
Without you, we might have ended up having some bad hummus, but thanks to you, we only had the best in each city. I learned so much from you it was as if I was learning everything that I would be learning in school, but right in front of my eyes.