We enjoyed another lovely Shabbat here in Jerusalem. Friday night we were invited over to a Pardes’ students house and Eric uninhibitedly talked about his political leanings in front of some very liberal people. Actually I thought it was very funny. We changed the topic and talked a lot about our Pardes classes, and I tried to explain to the only nonPardes guest about the reason why Chumash and Talmud classes didn’t happen at the same time–basically because studying Gemara is it’s own discipline! Saturday I went to the egalitarian minyan Kedem at chatted with some Pardes folks, including a kollel student who knew our Rabbi from DC (who doesn’t?) and who was at Chovevei Torah with our former assistant Rabbi from DC, Yossi Pollack. Small Jewish world as always.
So I’m beginning the process of grad school applications. I haven’t actually started the actual applications, but I’ve been doing some prep work trying to figure out what to highlight in a statement of purpose, brainstorming some of my oh so wonderful qualities and accomplishments. Hey, I’ve done marketing and pr, but self-promotion doesn’t come naturally to me.
So why am I bringing this up? Rummaging through my brain and reminiscing about my past experiences in DC while in Israel has been revelatory. For one thing, I wish I had better documented all of the good times that I had and all that I learned from work and friendships. At the same time, I’m fortunate to have come to this realization and to be able to document my wonderful experiences here.
For another, even though I’ve only been in Jerusalem for 3 months (or you could say alternatively, already 3 months!) I feel like DC was a totally different life, a totally different planet. And that I’m a completely different person. It’s amazing how I’ve settled into this new routine of going into school in the morning and volunteering in the afternoons.
There are of course many things that I haven’t gotten used to such as the fact that there really isn’t a weekend here because the week starts on Sunday. And most of the online radio that I listen to is American music and I still curse copyright regulations for disabling my Realplayer Rhapsody. At the same time, during the last couple of weeks I feel like I’ve been able to breathe a bit deeper, feel a bit more comfortable in my skin and bask in the feeling of gratefulness. I feel like my rhythms have become more attuned to the rhythims of the city.
I know that this year here is changing me. I still don’t know how I’ll turn up, but I know that it will be great. It’s like I’m cooking a new dish and I don’t know how it will turn out, but I’m certain it will be delicious.