"You know," Ben said pensively, "sometimes we really have no idea..."

David looked down at Ben from his hold on a small tree growing out of the side of the mountain. Above him were huge blocks of rocks, looking very threatening. The sun was blazing when the boys had set out that morning, and now it was even hotter. They had decided to hike up an "easy" mountain near the camp site, and Chaim, the camp counselor, had spent some time making sure they were all fitted out.

They had a compass, water, kosher chocolate and lightweight windbreakers in their backpacks. They had been walking for two hours, stolidly going up, up and up.

For the past hour Ben kept saying, "It feels like this way is going to take forever." He had been getting more and more miserable. And now they were faced with those impassable rocks. David slowly picked his way back down towards Ben. They looked around them. Ahead, to the right, to the left—huge rocks.

"What shall we do?" asked Ben, despair creeping into his voice.

"Here we are," David said, "halfway up a mountain, and we don't see a good way how to get around these rocks and go further up the mountain."

"Chaim said it's not too hard," said Ben. "He didn't say anything about these rocks. We must have taken the wrong path somewhere."

"We had the idea to climb this mountain, and that was good," David said.

"I'm not so sure about that," said Ben.

"Listen, that bit was good," said David. "But we forgot to bring a map with us. That was foolish. Why didn't Chaim give us a map?! If we had a proper map we could work out how to climb the mountain."

Ben looked around, without much hope, trying to see a possible route they could take that could get them round the huge rock face in front of them.

Suddenly Ben jumped, startled by David's voice. "Here, here!" David shouted as he waved a paper in front of Ben's nose. "I hadn't noticed. I found a map in my rucksack. Chaim must have given it to me after all and I just didn't realize. Come, let's work out where we are!"

It took the two boys a few minutes studying the map to work out where they were. Then they understood. There was actually a path through the rocks which was clearly marked on the map. "Easy route," it said. No problem. After eating some chocolate, they set off.

"You know," Ben said, after they had found the start of the easy route, "sometimes life is like a desert. Like it says in this week's Torah reading."

"Yes," said David. "The reading describes the desert the Jewish people wandered through, and the Sages tell us that desert is like the desert of exile, and sometimes like a person's life, full of challenges."

"Yes," said Ben. "But if you have a map, you're okay. Then you can work out how to get through."

"The map of Torah..." said David. "An old map, which is always new."