Alright, so, I seem to have come down with the Jerusalem bug. That means I feel like I look like a chipmunk because my sinuses are so huge, my throat is scratchy, my tummy hurts, and I’m always cold (that could just be from the lack of heat and constant hot water in this country). Anyways, I am pretty miserable, but very thankful that there is no school today so I could spend most of the day in bed. That is, until I found myself without my tylenol sinus and no more kleenex, so off to the Kiosk I went. Israel is great, they have about a million corner store type places within a 5-10 minute walk of my apartment. I went off to my favorite one… No Kleenex, hit up the next one, No Kleenex, and this happened 3 more times. Finally, when my nose was really running, my head spinning and my tummy aching i decided to tough it up and head to the grocery store, a 15 minute walk. And so I went. I get in there, and it seems as though every place I tried to go, someone would walk right in front of me. I go to the aisle that should have my kleenex, no, not there. Now I’m a little tanky (tired and cranky!), but my good friend from school is in front of me and finally points out the kleenex to me. And so I go over, grab my 10pack of pocket packages and 2 more huge boxes and begin to check out.
Checkout could of course never go easily. I find my line, only one person in front of me, and all of her stuff is baged up, yes i think, this will be quick. WRONG. she is taking ehr time talking to the cashier, I stand there for 5 minutes while they chat, wanting nothing more than take my stuff and run home to the bathtub. But, I control myself, listen to their conversation, and wait patiently. Finally, my turn. The cashier rings up my stuff and then, in typical Israeli fashion tries to offer me everything at the end of her lane, what a deal, kleenex in a different shaped box, cashews, persimons… finally out of frustration and realizing that being nice is not working, I snap at her in Hebrew that I just want what I brought to the register and want to leave. She rings me up and I leave. Looking forward to my bed at the end of the walk.
I head out for home, and as I’m halfway there, my finger starts hurting, i look and my shopping bag is wrapped a hundered times around my favorite turquoise/silver ring. I stop, try and undo it, and now my ring is bent way our of shape… such a sad day. I keep walking, I’m almost there, and a bicyclist cuts me off out of nowhere. I ignore it, focusing on my bed, but when I arrive at the stairs that bring me out to my street, there she is stopped there, on her cell phone (neatly held in place by her helmet) chatting away blocking the stairs. I politely say excuse me, but she cant’ hear me, she’s on the phone, so after about a minute of patients, I push my way through and my building is in sight. I reach the door, pull out my keys… they’re not there. My trusty Umich lanyard seems to only have my student ID on it and my locker key for my locker at the UJ… now, I want to cry. I dig around in my purse, and luckily, i find the keys, open the door, run to the elevator (wanting nothing more than to be in my bed) and it doesnt’ work…. up 5 flights of stairs i trudge, open my door, and finally, i am home…
UGH! What a trip, I miss America, my car, and the grocery store that has everything. As for more tylenol sinus… i’ll save the drugstore search when I have regained some of my strength! At least I can easily get Kosher Chicken soup here!!
Hello from Israel, where Thanksgiving is not a national holiday, and I will not suddenly be hearing Christmas music on the radio all the time. In Israel, today is just an ordinary Thursday, and I am o.k. with that! Instead, I live in a country where all the Americans around me at least, are trying to hold onto their American heritage and celebrate thanksgiving. Now, I love turkey, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie as much as the next American, but, is it the end of the world to be without it? No. I think it is much harder to be without my family, than to be without a turkey. Sure, we can sing thanksgiving songs or American songs, fight over turkey in the supermarket with some old woman who just wants to eat a nice shabbat dinner, search high and low for pie crusts that are not chocolate flavored. Or, we can celebrate the fact that I am thankful to be in Israel and have the friends that I do around me. Perhaps if I had planed better, I could have had people over, and had a great Israeli food feast, celebrating what I am thankful for, but oh well, maybe next year!!
I’m thinking about thanksgivings I have had throughout my life, and what I miss the most is not the food, but the friends and fmaily. I remember sleepovers with my best friend in elementary school, decorating the tablecloth, naming the turkey, waking up to the smell of my mom’s turkey, eating Auntie’s mashed potatoes, Nana’s lemonade jello mold, Belle’s pies, my Grammy eating the carcas, Tanta’s art projects, Putting on the play with my cousins, watching the parade together, and just being together… I’m thankful for all those memories this year and the Smile they put on my face!