Hello, hello again after my rebirth as an Israeli citizen. We are in the midst of setting up an Israeli bank account, scrambling for an apartment, clearing our shipment at customs, praying for our receipt of a Teudat Zehut (so we can clear customs), setting up a meeting with the Merkaz Klitah, figuring out health insurance coverage, avoiding greedy bank employees who try to convince me to transfer all of our dollars into an Israeli bank account (don’t ask), deciphering which Israeli appliances to purchase, making contacts in Raanana and Kfar Saba…And we were in Romania last week for a wedding, I go to Chicago on Wednesday for another wedding and Eric starts his job on September 4.
Hence the aptly named title of this blog Aaaaaaaaaaah. In other words, I can’t wait until this month is over. Did I mention I’m getting a cold?
I’ve spent the last month or so in the U.S. tying things up, seeing family and friends. I honestly haven’t been as busy as I could have been. Funny how you end up getting more things done when you are busy then when you have all the time in the world. But this past week’s craziness has made up for the blase I was feeling in the states.
I was ready to leave DC pretty soon after I had gotten there. I was really happy to see friends and former colleagues but think my gut was telling me that it was definitely time to move on. During our month or so of house sitting my former boss’ inlaw’s apartment (thanks to the Roths and Schecters) we ended up taking care of our aliyah Visa and our packing fairly quickly. Although I did overestimate the amount of stuff we’d be shipping, which I am now kicking myself for since we could have saved a little $ or used the space for some 220 V appliances. Oh well. Lots of mistakes along the way.
I don’t think I’ve written since I went to Italy in mid June! It was a really enjoyable trip spending time with family, eating lots of pasta and gelato, gawking at the landscape and just getting to breeaathe. (Living in Israel can do that to you) Although I could have done without cramming into the car and climbing up the Apuane Mountains with my Mom and Sister complaining in the back.
We stayed in a house in Forte Dei Marmi, a well-to-do city on the Tuscan coast. When it rained we spent time visiting Italian towns with lovely names like Lucca and Pesca and pigging out on large lunches. I didn’t eat the meat, but I did enjoy the pastas, fish and produce. When it was sunny we lay on the beach on blue chairs, chatted and got on each other’s nerves and waded in the water with Zeke.
You can see some of the pictures on flickr. Some of my favorite ones are of my nephew Zeke flirting with an Italian girl 2x his age. Ooo lala.
Speaking of which, I think Zeke and I fell in love with each other in Italy. That makes it all the harder to be away from him. This might sound like the proud aunt, but he is such a funny little guy! He’s got the potential for the stage—he makes faces to entertain, he smiles at all the pretty women, has a nice singing voice and also announces when he as to make a poop. He enjoys activities such as attending music class with Mr. Lee, watching Thomas the Train videos, pushing his miniature stroller with his Elmo or Cookie doll and dancing to Sesame Street’s ‘vegetable dance.’ He still remembers when I had go ‘go on the choo choo train’ back to Israel. Although he screams like the devil when he doesn’t want to go to bed. Almost time for terrible twos.
Italy is just beautiful without having the intensity of a place like Israel. Israel has this fervent, urgent and stark beauty to it (love me darn it!) Italy can just take you or leave you. She knows she’s beloved so she’s just chilling. Eric and I wonder why we weren’t born Italian and we could just make aliyah there 🙂
But here I am in Israel. Still the same gal, but improving my Hebrew daily. Hopefully this whole experience will force me to become more flexible and philosophical. Actually, I’m pretty sure it will.
I do love this place even with all of the adjustment anxiety and uncertainty facing us. Just today, the cab driver suggested I try this type of gum–I think it was chewing tobacco–and said it was good for sex. In the U.S. that would be considered too much information. But I here I am in Israel.