Day 6

It rained all night and all morning so far, Shabbat starts tonight at 4:30 or so and I am excited. I haven’t shabbat in the holy name since 2015. This is what I live for in Jerusalem.
I attempted to get up and walk today. Well first off it was cold as I don’t know what and those leggings were not the business. Secondly my legs really hurt from yesterday. So I returned, got back in the bed and sent off some messages while watching friends and tying to go back to bed.
My friend comes to get me and we walk to the Farmers Market. I was excited about the Farmers Market thinking it was huge like what we have n the bay. It wasn’t. It was small and not all that exciting, not to brave the rain.
We finished shopping and I returned and to back into bed. I love lay Fridays. So I’m here thinking about everything I have done and accomplished here. At first I was cranky about taking this Pilot Trip but I think it’s useful even if you are sure about making aliyah. So let me tell you what my Pilot Trip has helped me to do:
It’s helped me experience the day to day life as an Israeli. Waking up and going to appointments. Experiencing public transportation and getting lost because this is not my home. Needing to use my map for everything and needing to carry my external charger everywhere because I am not in my car where U can just plug my phone in while I go from place to place. Even with traffic there is something nice about having a car in the states, mostly it’s that nice warm heater on a cold day. Learning/Dealing with Traffic, the weather, the man on the bus saying something in Hebrew I don’t understand and turning to the person next to me and asking her what he said and having a Henglish (Hebrew + English) conversation.
Feeling utterly and completely exhausted at the end of the day. I mean just look at number one. I feel like on paper I have not done a lot. But when you have to leave at a certain time from your home then walk to the bus stop then wait for the bus then get on the bus then track where you are going on your phone because you can’t quite read or understand Hebrew, then get off the bus and try to map your location, while your friends trying to guide you and your in a new neighborhood with Ultra-Orthodox folks who make you just as nervous as the ultra religious Muslims who want to kill all jews because they are super fanatical in their devotion, then your phone battery is slowly losing it’s juice because it’s constantly roaming, and you still can’t orient yourself in time in space, and it’s freaking cold and/or raining, then at the end of a day you are completely tired in a whole new way. Theres no way to prepare for this type of tired-you literally have to experience it
My appetite. My appetite has been fucked! Sorry I’m tired and I’m not watching my language. Back home theres a certain routine to me eating. Also I am a picky eater. I like what I like and that’s all there is too it. Well I’m staying at folks houses and I have not one to the grocery store because they have food and I only cook once a week. My Tupperware is not here and pots are here and there and I’m not washing dishes. So I eat what is prepared by others or what’s in the fridge. Well there are multiple problems here. Theres the fact that they don’t have what I like. I’m staying with people who are health conscious. That is not me. The other is that I’m going from here and there all the time. Walking and Walking and Walking. I noticed yesterday something new about myself. After exercising I generally need some wind down time before my body signals hunger to my brain. So since I’ve been nonstop I haven’t felt really hungry so I haven’t really eaten. Today, lazy day, is the day I’ve noticed that I feel really hungry. But again I want some meat and there is no meat here. It’s raining so I’m not going to the burger spot. So I eat healthy and just wait for shabbat dinner tonight. It’s so interesting. I may just loose weight after all.
I have to live alone. I have been trying in vain this week and even before to connect with people who need roommates for me and Autumn. Well I have gotten very sparse responses so I take it as a sign that I will need to live alone. I still want a one bedroom but I’ll deal with a studio if need be. My budget max, not negotiable will be 3500 shekels/month. The good thing is that at least with my own place I can get the Arnona (property tax) discount for being a new Olia (Person making aliyah). Also I get the Sal Klita which is money from the government for moving. So yesterday I contacted some folks to see apartments but again my friend in Jerusalem will let me and Autumn stay with her for a minute so I’ll use her address plus there may be some leads-I have a couple more days.
I will keep my car. It will be very hard and there will be no money for fun, but that’s ok because comfort is ore of a priority in my old age (32 old ha!). I know I want to start a family in a few years and I cannot imagine trying to Schlep my babies in the rain on the bus. Nope! Plus I think that I will be full time private practice in a couple years and I’ll know the country better so I can add the home visits to my practice. Then I can see people all over. I love my Honda CR-V and I want the same car and it costs 244,000 shekels for my same car. Thats way more than I spent on it. Even to keep it an import it will be cheaper than buying new. So now I need to find a place to leave her.
I want to live in Jerusalem. That was solidified. As much as I love the German Colony/Baka area I feel like Nachlaot and the surrounding areas will be good for me. Theres a dog park and people my age there. The shut is right there and I love the shuk. Its close to the central bus station so visiting Tel Aviv is easier. But mostly as long as I’m in Jerusalem I’ll be happy.
I really like speaking Hebrew and I am proud of myself that I am starting to think of sentences in Hebrew. I do wish that I knewmyre words so I will focus on building vocabulary. I think my accent is hilarious and I’m ok with people correcting me. I keep envisioning my little babies speaking Hebrew and making fun of my horrible accent but I will keep at it.
It’s stupid to commute from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv via public transportation for me. It wont work and I’ll be miserable. It’s better that I stay in Jerusalem since eI want to make it my home.
Get out of my comfort zone. Ask for help. say what I need. Be ok with yes and no.
I still think aliyah is good for me. One of the things that dawned on me as why it may feel really hard this week is because I’m not home. I miss my doggy! I miss my bed. I miss my heater. I miss my movies and crappy tv. I miss video games and computer games. I miss my heater (wait did I say that twice?…Yeah I miss curling up in bed blanket next t the heater. I miss walking around without pants. I miss my slippers. I miss carpet. I miss the foods I like. I miss having my own quiet space and not worrying about others. I miss cooking the foods I like (I really want some fried chicken right now). I miss my seasonings. I miss blasting my music. So I make aliyah and I bring these things. I buy a nice space heater so I can snuggle up in front of it. I’ll pack my flannel sheets and comforter (Jerusalem is cold and awesome). Autumn will come and hate the rain but we can snuggle. I will introduce her to other doggy friends.
So that’s what I learned on this trip so far. Even though my advisor might not think much of what I’ve done, I’ve done and learned a lot and I am proud of myself. I have all ready made friends and connections. As of today I have a meeting for a job at a mental health clinic on Monday and I’m so hoping that it pays something decent. I really want to work at a gan (nursery or pre-school) during the mornings and practice in the afternoon and evenings. I hope to look at some apartments on Sunday and Monday before leaving Tuesday. That’s it in a nutshell. See you in 25 hours.
Shabbat Shalom!

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