Gilad Shalit arrives at his home in the northern village of Mitzpe Hila

Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier who was held captive in the Gaza Strip for over five years, gave an interview to Israel’s Channel 10 on the first year anniversary of his release. Here are some of the things Gilad said during the interview:

- he feared he would be forgotten during his years in Hamas custody

- “I tried to be optimistic… to concentrate on the things I had, the small things. He explained that he had television and “decent” food.

- He did not sleep well but kept to a daily schedule and was always active.

- He played chess and dominoes with his captors

- When he was alone he passed the time with what he called “strange games” such as makeshift sports like throwing “balls” he made out of socks and shirts into a trash can. He also invented a one player game which he said was similar to Scattergories.

- He did a lot of writing. He wrote lists to made sure he remembered things and drew a map of Israel and his neighborhood with all its homes so he would not forget them.

- He was informed of his possible release at the same time everyone else found out. He didn’t sleep during those days and was afraid that someone would try to harm him on his way back to Israel.

- Regarding his release he said: “It was a strange feeling to see the sun and sky but that they weren’t completely foreign. I saw them on TV and with my imagination.”

- He fell asleep around 9 p.m. on his first night home and woke up around 2 a.m. He walked around his house, looked out the windows and saw police there to protect him.

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