Friday, November 2, 2007


Wow, it seems like only yesterday I was writing a post about Shabbat. This past week has been what I would call eventful.

The week seemed pretty boring at first with only work to look forward to. That all changed when I learned that I wouldn't have to work Wednesday. The Kibbutz had planned a trip to Tel-Aviv for the volunteers. So Wednesday morning we woke up at 8am...that's right we slept in. We got on a mini-bus and headed for Tel-Aviv. The tour guide was hired because he spoke Hebrew and Spanish. The whole tour on the bus was Spanish and was quite annoying to me. Why not do the tour in Hebrew or English, you know the two languages that are common to everyone. The tour was quite boring even to the Spanish speakers. We drove around all the fun parts of Tel-Aviv and didn't leave the bus until Yafo.

When we arrived in Yafo the guide took us to some Christian historical sites and explained that Yafo was very culturally important to both Christians and Jews. I guess I missed the part of the tour about the Jewish parts of Yafo. Regardless the small town is quite pretty with its stone houses and great plazas. After the tour we went to the Shuk in Yafo where I bought nothing. It was interesting to test my Hebrew skills in bargaining for others. I actually talked a merchant from 80 NIS to 20 NIS on a scarf for a friend. After the Shuk we had lunch in a beautiful restaurant in Yafo. Falafel and all the fixings. We devoured with reckless abandon as the food far surpassed anything we ate at the Kibbutz.

It was in Yafo that tragedy struck me personally. My camera, already malfunctioning, was handed to our tour guide to snap a group photo overlooking Tel-Aviv from Yafo. Great picture on everyone else's camera. However, the guide dropped the camera just after snapping the picture. I examined it and noted that it seemed fine. That is until I started taking pictures with it after the tour was over. The camera now doesn't even turn on or take pictures. I'm supremely pissed and can't seem to find anywhere in Israel that can fix it. Sending it home will cost the same as a new camera because of taxes and import duties. I'm truly at a loss.

To top off the horror of my personal tragedy the rest of the tour of Tel-Aviv was going to the Shuk in Tel-Aviv. Seems to me like a wasted tour when there is so much more to the city than the silly tourist trap of a market. Anyway I won't dwell on it.

On Thursday work was suddenly shut down for about an hour when someone drilled a hole into a wall of our kitchenette. Water began spewing out of the pipe he had just drilled through. It was probably the funniest thing I've ever seen in a work setting. It took 20 minutes to figure out which pipe the water was coming from and to turn it off. At which point the whole side of our workshop was covered in water. Almost a centimeter of water accumulated on the floor and had to be squeegeed out before work could resume. Funny way to take a break huh?

Today the kibbutz will be losing power for maintenance purposes at around 11:30. This means that my day ended around 10:00 Am after the breakfast break. It was lovely to have such a short day before Shabbat.

This weekend we're going into Tel-Aviv for the Yitzak Rabin Memorial ceremony on Rabin square. It should be an incredible experience. But that's what I love about Israel. This country blends the Ancient, the new, the religious, and the secular into one amazing place. My two choices this weekend were the Rabin Ceremony and a party in Tel-Aviv or a Shabbaton in Jerusalem. How does one pick between those two strange choices in this amazing land.

Have a good Shabbat everyone, post more next week!


Lizzo said...

That's awesome -- I love the water pipe break... and because someone drilled into the kitchen. Amazing.

When you get back, you'll have to write a book... I know a good editor.

Miss you and can't want to hear more of the adventures!!

Phyllis Sommer said...

the tour guide *dropped* your camera??????? it's broken?????

i'm speechless.

and sad.

Anonymous said...

Look, I know this part of your life is about you, but what about finding GIGS for a soon to be 58 Year old YID Flute Player. Doesn't matter what kind of music it is-Klezmer, Classical, Jazz.
You should be finding your cousin a gig in ISRAEL! That should be your purpose!