Sorry about the title. I tried.
Adam Halley and his son Boaz went on a once in a lifetime motorcycle trip across America. Boaz is about to be drafted into the IDF and Adam, a reserve officer, is about to retire from his duty. I met up with them in LA where we had some awesome kosher fish tacos. I spoke to Adam recently as they started to wind down their trip.
ck: How’s your butt Adam?
Adam: HA! It’s actually very sore. 6400 miles on a motorcycle in about a month can do that. But it was worth it to have the opportunity to meet so many people and to share with them what life in Yehuda and Shomron is really like.
ck: You and your kid Boaz did a lot of riding recently. Want to tell us why?
Adam: Sure. We rode for 3 reasons. One because we really love to ride. It’s been a dream that Boaz and I ride across the USA together and we figured this would be our only opportunity to take this ride for a long time to come. Two, the reason why we needed to take this ride now is that Boaz is going into the IDF this year so he won’t be able to travel abroad for a few years, so this was the right time to commemorate his upcoming draft into the IDF and at the same time my retirement from the IDF reserves. I’ve been a reserve Officer in the IDF for over 20 years and now it’s Boaz’s turn to put on the uniform of the Jewish Army and to continue our Legacy. We really wanted to spread the word to the people we met that Jewish settlers from Judea and Samaria are people, so Boaz told them what it was like when his school went into lockdown due to a terror alert and I told them about life in the settlements and how amazing it is to live in a community where everyone looks out for each others children. We really met a lot of interesting and friendly people as we rode across the USA and back again. Jews, Christians … We spoke at Churches, Synagogues, in peoples homes etc. even in the street, in parking lots, at gas stations.
ck: Where did you start and what was the route? Anything particularly memorable happen? What places really stood out for you and your son?
Adam: We started in Dayton OH at the home of the president of the Jewish Motorcyclists Alliance. He set us up with the bikes and helped us get ready to ride. He also helped us make contacts with the 30+ Jewish MCs (motorcycle Clubs) accross the USA so we always had friends everywhere we went. We rode from Ohio to Skokie IL, then on to Nebraska, Colorado. When we reached the west coast we headed east through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, onto Georgia, then north west through the carolinas, virginais and back to Texas through 25 states in all! As far as memorable goes, we rode through 115+ degree heat, chilling rains and even a tornado. Sometimes we had to take off our cold weather gear and put it back on again 5 times a day due to weather changes. Boaz and I both really loved riding through the rockies with the snow on the peaks in mid August and seeing the giant cattle ranches in Texas. Some even had a star of David on the ranch sign!
ck: Like ranches that were giant or ranches that contained giant cows?
Adam: Ha! Giant ranches. As big as the entire Shomron!
ck: How were you received? Were people positive or did they criticize you for being an “evil” setter?
Adam: People were amazing. We met Christians that actually cheered when they saw the Israeli flags on our bikes. We spoke in lots of places and received lots of support and good will from many people.
ck: Did you come across folks who weren’t so supportive? I mean according to some, a Jewish identity with no Zionism is where US Jews are headed.
Adam: Not really. Those kinds of people usually hide when they see an Israeli flag and a proud Jew, so we didn’t get to talk to them. Don’t forget we rode through Beverly Hills, up and down the Strip in Las Vegas, through the Grand Canyon to 3 coasts with our Israeli flags and through lots of small towns and cities along the way. People who want to show support come over and say hi, the rest look away and are embarrassed that they have no pride in being Jews.
ck: Sounds like it was an excellent experience, I hope Boaz appreciates how lucky he was to be able to spend all that time in such a unique way with his Dad. I hope you appreciate that your wife hasn’t sent assassins out to kill you!
Adam: Who said she didn’t? They just werent any good. I’m a highly trained IDF officer and an expert in counter terrorism.
ck: Well I’m sure the rest of the family will be glad to have you back.
Adam: but seriously this was the adventure of a lifetime for both of us and I’d like to take this opprtunity to thank my amazing wife for holding down the home fort while Boaz and I rode across the USA. The rest of my family will probably ask me to take them on a ride too.
ck: You have a motorcycle in Israel right? Take them on a ride to the makolet!
Adam: ha. I take them all over the country. It’s one of the best ways to see Israel. Don’t forget I dont have a car in Israel, so I ride a motorcycle everywhere.
ck: I thought I saw you in a company car last time I was up there…
Adam: I’ve been in the old city of Jerusalem, in the Arab village of Kifel Charas at Yehoshua bin Nun’s tomb, to the steps of the cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron and to almost everywhere else in Israel on a motorcycle and sometimes my wife or one of my kids comes along for the ride – although lately in Israel Boaz had been riding with me on the back.
ck: Any parting words? Web sites we should visit etc?
Adam: Please take a look at http://amitz.org to see what we do to secure the settlements and at http://www.facebook.com/IDFMotorcycleLegacyTour to see pictures, maps and read more about the tour!
ck: Thanks for taking the time to talk to me Adam! Say hi to the boy for me.
Adam: My pleasure! I will.